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Mellits: Tight Sweater, Etc / Real Quiet

Release Date: 08/08/2006 
Label:  Endeavour Classics   Catalog #: 1016   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Marc Mellits
Performer:  David CossinFelix FanAndrew RussoCristina Buciu,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Real Quiet
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 56 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Mark Mellits is a post-minimalist composer whose music takes in a typically eclectic mix of elements: bits of melody ranging from Stravinsky's Rite of Spring to TV-theme tunes, a touch of Steve Reich, rock and pop, and the occasional burst of original melody. A lot of it sounds like an accompaniment waiting for the tune to arrive, but to Mellits' credit, even when it doesn't arrive there's usually enough rhythmic interest to keep you guessing, and none of the various movements comprising the larger works is all that long. As such, contrast is less within each piece than it is between them.

Mellits also makes a point of giving his pieces quirky titles. Examples include the title track, Tight Sweater, but there's also Trans
Read more Fatty Acid's Rein, Mechanically Separated Chicken Parts, Shagadellic, and so forth. These have little or nothing to do with the musical content, and I have to say that this device may have been adorable in the 1850s and '60s when Rossini did it, but it's pretty tired now. Anyway, the performances, by the trio Real Quiet (piano, cello, and percussion) and friends, are suitably brilliant and rhythmically hard-edged. They make the works sound significant, as does the very present and slightly dry sound.

Mellits' music is self-consciously "in", and not the kind of thing the general classical music listener will likely appreciate, so my rating is necessarily a bit cautionary. But if you're one of the "in" crowd and enjoy minimalism and its more recent progeny, then you'll want this. Others feeling adventurous should know that there's nothing here that's obnoxiously difficult or offensive. On the contrary, the music is often engaging if perhaps a bit texturally monotonous. The third movement of Tight Sweater, "Mara's Lullaby", is really quite beautiful. Indeed, Mellits seems to be pretty good at writing tunes; he should do it more often.

--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Tight Sweater by Marc Mellits
Performer:  David Cossin (Marimba), Felix Fan (Cello), Andrew Russo (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Real Quiet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2005 
Venue:  De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York 
Length: 18 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Notes: De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York (05/09/2005 - 05/10/2005) 
Fruity Pebbles by Marc Mellits
Performer:  Cristina Buciu (Violin), Chuck Meyer (Cello), Felix Fan (Cello),
Andrew Russo (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Real Quiet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1997 
Venue:  De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York 
Length: 19 Minutes 23 Secs. 
Notes: De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York (05/09/2005 - 05/10/2005) 
Agu by Marc Mellits
Performer:  Andrew Russo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2004 
Venue:  De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York 
Length: 10 Minutes 31 Secs. 
Notes: De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York (05/09/2005 - 05/10/2005) 
Disciples of Gouda by Marc Mellits
Performer:  Andrew Russo (Piano), Thomas Kolor (Marimba), Felix Fan (Cello),
David Cossin (Percussion)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Real Quiet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2003 
Venue:  De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York 
Length: 7 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: De Angelis Studios, Manlius, New York (05/09/2005 - 05/10/2005) 

Sound Samples

Tight Sweater: I. Exposed Zipper
Tight Sweater: II. Trans Fatty Acid's Rein
Tight Sweater: III> Mara's Lullaby
Tight Sweater: IV. Pickle Trousers
Tight Sweater: V. Evil Yellow Penguin
Tight Sweater: VI. Mechanically Separated Chicken Parts
Agu: I. Sheep Balls
Agu: II. The Triumph of the Water Witch
Agu: III. You're a Fake
Fruity Pebbles: I. Wood
Fruity Pebbles: II. Shattered Glass
Fruity Pebbles: III. CIB
Fruity Pebbles: IV. 4LB
Fruity Pebbles: V. Shagadellic
Fruity Pebbles: VI. Blue
Fruity Pebbles: VII. Lizzie's Stomach
Fruity Pebbles: VIII. Lefty's Elegy
Disciples of Gouda

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