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Anfangs - New Works For Solo Guitar / Tuomo Tirronen

Release Date: 04/03/2007 
Label:  Msr   Catalog #: 1214   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Harri SuilamoToru TakemitsuLeo BrouwerMaurice Ohana,   ... 
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 54 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

ANFANGS Tuomo Tirronen (gtr) MSR 1214 (53:48)

SUILAMO Anfangs. HAAPALAINEN Miksi? TAKEMITSU In the Woods. BROUWER Hika. OHANA Tiento. HOSOKAWA Serenade. Read more class="COMPOSER12"> WILSON Cancion

Tuomo Tirronen’s recital emphasizes mood and atmosphere while shunning flamboyance or superficial virtuosity. The care with which he has assembled these pieces, his sense of timing, and his devoted advocacy create an intriguing experience for the listener. Melody, while not absent, is not the focus of these pieces; and harmony, while not frighteningly atonal, is not soothingly consonant. These are thoughtful, pensive compositions, often in another “language,” but communicative and evocative nonetheless. I found it a provocative selection, prompting reflections about music, its purpose, style, and construction. The guitarist’s liner notes acknowledge his awareness of potential resistance on the part of an audience: “As a performer, I play this music not necessarily because it is ‘art,’ but rather to stay connected with what is happening in today’s music world. I cannot ignore the music of our time because it may not be ‘beautiful’ or easy to understand. This new music represents the ideas and values of our time.” That said, the curious listener need not fear entering this “new” world: all that is required is a willingness to hear with open ears, and something memorable will be transmitted.

Suilamo’s Anfangs (“Beginnings”) offers pithy, slightly unnerving atonal musings that shouldn’t overly distress any musically cognizant child of the 21st century. Haapalainen’s Miksi? (“Why?”) brings a refreshing contrast to the preceding severity: its longer melodies and subtle melancholy suit the perennial question. The three sonic “landscapes” of Takemitsu’s last work, In the Woods , depict (according to the guitarist) “Japanese culture and Shintoism, and nature’s connection with spirituality.” Whether or not the composer succeeded in embodying these inspirations in the music, he does create his own world of sound and feeling. Takemitsu conveys a sense of “contemplative place” that’s not necessarily site-specific. I see fog-shrouded woods, misty rainfall, lonely pines surrounding mountain lakes. Brouwer’s Hika (In memorium Toru Takemitsu) successfully recreates Takemitsu’s distinctive sound, with occasional traces of Brouwer’s Cuban accent. Ohana’s Tiento abstracts and juxtaposes Flamenco elements to forge a new, but familiar idiom. It’s severe and powerful. Hosokawa’s Serenade borrows koto techniques (string bending and snapping) and concentrates the attention on each meditative gesture. It’s reminiscent of Japanese classical (pre-Western) music in its spare intensity. Lastly, Wilson’s Cancion is not so direct in melody as the title would have one believe. Still, there’s a hint of Latin lyricism beneath the surface.

Tirronen plays with dedication, precision, and sympathy. His performances are dignified, detailed, and allow everything to sound with maximum impact. Recommended to those with a taste for exploration.

FANFARE: Robert Schulslaper
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Works on This Recording

Anfangs by Harri Suilamo
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1993; Finland 
In the Woods by Toru Takemitsu
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1995; Japan 
Hika "In Memoriam Toru Takemitsu" by Leo Brouwer
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1996; Cuba 
Tiento by Maurice Ohana
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1955; France 
Serenade for Guitar by Toshio Hosokawa
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2003; Japan 
Cancion by Thomas Wilson
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1982; Scotland 
Miksi ? by Antti Haapalainen
Performer:  Tuomo Tirronen (Guitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: Finland 

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