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Instrument Of The Devil / Rachel Barton, Patrick Sinozich


Release Date: 12/02/1998 
Label:  Cedille Records   Catalog #: 41   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Camille Saint-SaënsGiuseppe TartiniFranz LisztHector Berlioz,   ... 
Performer:  Rachel Barton PinePatrick SinozichDavid SchraderJohn Mark Rozendaal,   ... 
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 18 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The devil's a fiddler extraordinaire: If you doubt it, watch him play baubles by Paganini in The Witches of Eastwick or a remarkable variation on The Devil s Dream in The Devil and Daniel Webster. Bach and Bruckner wrote for God, but who wrote the music for His infernal adversary? Unsavory types like Liszt, Berlioz, Paganini, and Ernst, among others; and their musical sketches are just a bit too lifelike for comfort, especially as Halloween approaches. In fact, Cedille Records, releasing Rachel Barton's collection in time for the celebration, included packages of Red Hots with review copies (which I assume the Editor ate before passing the disc on to me).

In earlier reviews, I've noted a slenderness in Rachel Barton's tone
Read more (specifically in Handel Sonatas, Cedille CDR90000 032, Fanfare 21:1 and in concertos by black composers, Cedille CDR 90000 035, 21:5). She must have been washing down steaks with raw eggs in the meantime, because her sound in her new release could knock you out of your seat, as at the beginning of Saint-Saëns's Danse macabre or the end of Milstein's Mephisto Waltz (after Liszt). Overcoming one technical challenge after another with intimidating self-confidence, she and pianist Patrick Sinozich create a sinister atmosphere in Saint-Saëns's Danse. Tartini's original version of his "Devil's Trill," no longer such a novelty as when Eduard Melkus recorded it on LP (Archiv 2533 086), still hasn't received the same lengthy roster of sulfurous recordings as has Kreisler's edition. Andrew Manze showed how far a half-cracked imagination could take the sonata (Harmonia Mundi USA, HMU 907213, 21:5), but Barton has achieved a similarly exciting and somewhat more ingratiating effect on her modern instrument (actually not so modern—the "ex-Lobkowicz" Antonius and Hieronymous Amati of 1617, beautifully represented in the booklet)—simply by making the most of the original (and spikier) harmonies at tempos that are, in the fast movements, at least, among the quickest I've heard. And although her ornamentation of the repeated sections hews closer to the traditional line than did Manze's, it's both idiomatic and highly theatrical. Heifetz's adoption of Bazzini's Dance of the Goblins nearly knocked it out of the ring; and it occasions one of the few unfavorable comparisons with other artists: Even if she could match Heifetz's speed in the left-hand pizzicatos, Barton's dancing seems left-footed. But there's no such heavy labor in her daunting gallop though the night in Ernst's Erlkönig transcription. Leila Josefowicz (Philips 446 700-2) made more of the dialog between the riders, but hardly left the listener so breathless. Barton's performance charges with a frenzy similar to Ingolf Turban's (Claves CD 50-9613, 20:6). The violin is no Et? clarinet, and it's as hard to imagine any wholly successful transcription of Berlioz's Witches' Sabbath. Barton and Sinozich's cauldron does occasionally bubble, though, with the performers' enthusiasm as the main ingredient. The inclusion of Stravinsky's Devil's Dance in his own trio version is a stroke of macabre genius, and Sarasate's Faust Fantasy, less familiar than its counterpart by Wieniawski, is exceptionally welcome.

The detailed notes, excellent photography, as well as the larger-than-life presence the engineers have accorded the performers, enhance the appeal of a release that deserves a place in every violinist's library. A frightfully good, thoroughly entertaining fire and brimstone recital, warmly (or, in keeping with the theme, hotly) recommended. Look out, Jack Nicholson!

-- Robert Maxham, Fanfare, Issue 22:3 (Jan/Feb 1999) Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Danse macabre by Camille Saint-Saëns
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studios, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 7 Minutes 7 Secs. 
2.
Sonata for Violin and Basso Continuo in G minor, B g5 "Devil's Trill" by Giuseppe Tartini
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), David Schrader (Harpsichord), John Mark Rozendaal (Cello)
Period: Baroque 
Written: Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 15 Minutes 57 Secs. 
3.
Der Tanz in der Dorfschenke, S 514 "Mephisto Waltz no 1" by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859-1860; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 7 Minutes 21 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: Nathan Milstein 
4.
Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14: 5th movement, Witch's Sabbath by Hector Berlioz
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830; France 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 10 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: Rachel Barton 
5.
Concert Fantasy on Gounod's "Faust", Op. 13 by Pablo de Sarasate
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 13 Minutes 30 Secs. 
6.
La ronde des lutins, Op. 25 by Antonio Bazzini
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1847; Italy 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 5 Minutes 5 Secs. 
7.
Le roi des aulnes, Op. 26 "Der Erlkönig" by Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1854; Moravia, Czech Repub 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 4 Minutes 11 Secs. 
8.
Theme and Variations for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 8 "Le streghe" by Niccolò Paganini
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1813 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 10 Minutes 2 Secs. 
9.
El amor brujo: Dance of Terror by Manuel de Falla
Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), Patrick Sinozich (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1914-1915; Spain 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 2 Minutes 11 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: Pawel Kochanski 
10.
L'histoire du soldat: Devil's Dance by Igor Stravinsky
Performer:  Patrick Sinozich (Piano), Rachel Barton Pine (Violin), John Bruce Yeh (Clarinet)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1918; Switzerland 
Date of Recording: 07/1998 
Venue:  WFMT Studio One, Chicago, Illinois 
Length: 1 Minutes 21 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Danse macabre, Op. 40: Danse macabre in G minor, Op. 40
Violin Sonata in G minor, "The Devil's Trill": I. Larghetto Affectuoso
Violin Sonata in G minor, "The Devil's Trill": II. Tempo guisto della Scuola Tartinista
Violin Sonata in G minor, "The Devil's Trill": III. Sogni dellautore: Andante
Der Tanz in der Dorfschenke, S514/R181, "Mephisto Waltz No. 1": Der Tanz in der Dorfschenke, S514/R181,
Scherzo Fantastique, Op. 25, "La Ronde de lutins": La ronde des lutins, scherzo fantastique (Round of the Goblins, Fanstatic Scherzo), Op. 25
Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14: V. Songe d'un nuit de Sabbat (Dream of a Witches' Sabbath)
El amor brujo (Love, the Magician): El amor brujo: Dance of Terror
Le roi des aulnes, Op. 26: Grand Caprice: Schubert - Der Erlkonig, Op. 26
Le streghe: Op. 8, MS 19 (arr. for solo violin)
Histoire du soldat (The Soldier's Tale): L'histoire du soldat (The Soldier's Tale), Part II: XI. The Devil's Dance
Faust Fantasy

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