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Jeremy Beck: Ion Sound Project

Release Date: 06/28/2011 
Label:  Innova   Catalog #: 797  
Composer:  Jeremy Beck
Performer:  Rob FrankenberryElisa Kohanski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ion Sound Project
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 9 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

BECK In Flight Until Mysterious Night. Cello Sonata No. 2 . In February. Gemini. Slow Motion. 3rd Delphic Hymn. September Music IonSound Project INNOVA 797 (69:21)

Take whatever side(s) you want in the new-music wars, one undeniably important observation about current views of audiences and critics is that a truce of sorts seems to be prevailing, with a growing consensus that aesthetic sides need not be taken at all (other than assessments of Read more quality). This seems almost too obvious a point to make, but it’s been a long time coming, even if all parties are not entirely there yet.

I’m sure Jeremy Beck would be the first to acknowledge that listeners won’t feel confronted or challenged by the music in his new CD IonSound Project (also the name of the fine ensemble) as much as invited into a sound world that feels familiar and comfortable, though the seven works are recent creations. The loudest echoes in Beck’s music are all tonally centered Americans, most notably Copland and Adams, and most particularly the pastoral elements of the former. The gentle syncopations that frequently emerge could be a reflection of Bernstein specifically, or the jazz idiom more generally.

The listener is also likely to experience feelings of nostalgia, as with In February for soprano and three instruments. Singer Margaret Baube Andraso gives a lithe and lyrical reading of a text (by the composer) steeped in loneliness and recrimination. Memory and seasonal references are also in play in September Music , a thoroughly engrossing work that suggests a pensive and melancholy posture without the benefit of lyrics.

Slow Motion has some of the most overt jazz influences, with piano and vibes trading attractive, syncopated snips of melody. His Cello Sonata No. 2 uses similar language, though earlier eras of Western Romanticism are tapped as well. Beck composes sensitively and idiomatically for the cello, and cellist Elisa Kohanski and pianist Rob Frankenberry give the work a passionate and engaging reading.

The other works all benefit from equally strong performances by ensemble members, including violinist Laura Motchalov in Third Delphic Hymn and flutist Peggy Yoo, Frankenberry, and Kohanski in Gemini . Like all of the pieces, In Flight Until Mysterious Night is aptly titled, brimming with airy, forward motion. The recorded sound is clear and bright. Highly recommended.

FANFARE: Michael Cameron
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Works on This Recording

In Flight Until Mysterious Night by Jeremy Beck
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ion Sound Project
Sonata for Cello and Piano no 2 by Jeremy Beck
Performer:  Rob Frankenberry (Piano), Elisa Kohanski (Cello)
In February by Jeremy Beck
Gemini by Jeremy Beck
Slow Motion by Jeremy Beck
Third Delphic Hymn by Jeremy Beck
September Music by Jeremy Beck

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