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Dvorak and America by Kevin Deas, Benjamin Pasternack, Zhou Qian, Edmund Battersby, Michael Worfe
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New Classical Tracks: Dvorak and America
The centerpiece of this programme is the first ever recording of the Hiawatha Melodrama, a concert work for narrator and orchestra designed to show the kinship between Dvorak’s New World Symphony and Longfellow’s poem The Song of Hiawatha, which Dvorak said had inspired him in the symphony. It takes music from the symphony, as well as passages from the American Suite and Violin Sonatina, and fuses them with the poem, which is recited by a bass-baritone. Also included is music by Arthur Farwell, who was influenced by Dvorak, and was a proponent of Native American music. This recording thus celebrates the crosscurrent of influences between the Czech composer and American music and culture.
Time For Three by Time For Three
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New Classical Tracks: Time for Three
The album showcases not only the trios melody-rich string weave but also its unique flair for collaboration. It was these compelling qualities that led Universal Music Classics to sign the trio as their first U.S. act to their newly branded label. Time For Three features tracks co-produced by Rob Moose from Bon Iver, Grammy-winning producer David Lai, critically acclaimed Steven Hackman and memorable pairings with pop singer-songwriter Joshua Radin, jazz saxophone icon Branford Marsalis, Decca s young cello star Alisa Weilerstein, ukulele ace Jake Shimabukuro, and folk-pop sister duo Lily & Madeleine.
Carlo Bergonzi: The Sublime Voice by Carlo Bergonzi
NPR’s Deceptive Cadence: A Voice Of Velvet And Bronze: Carlo Bergonzi At 90
Carlo Bergonzi is widely considered to be one of the great tenors of the 20th century. His golden tone, thrilling dynamism, and lively phrasing served him well, especially in his choice roles by Verdi and Puccini. While little in this collection falls below the level of excellent, particularly fine are the excerpts from Un Ballo in Maschera (featuring Bergonzi’s wicked chuckle in “E’ scherzo od è follia”), La Bohème (has “Che gelida manina” ever been sung with such seductive nuance?), and La Traviata, though in this Bergonzi is even better on his RCA recording with Prêtre. (Rigoletto deserves top mention as well, but I confess to lately being under the thrall of Jan Peerce on the recent Naxos release.)
Curiously, Bergonzi’s Pinkerton just misses first rate stature, perhaps because he keeps the character within ordinary human dimensions—something that, eschewing the “noble” presentation of some other tenors, makes the character all the more easy to despise. An unexpected item is “Dio! Mi potevi scagliar” from Otello, a role that, except for a disastrous first attempt last year at age 75, Bergonzi never sang on stage. No such worries here: it sounds just fine.
Bergonzi had the ability to bring characters to life by imbuing his singing with a tactile emotional intensity. You can hear this to great effect in his Cavaradossi, Pagliacci, and Radames; in fact you hear it in everybody he plays in this set. No, he doesn’t have the voluminous heft of Del Monaco or the piercing “squillo” tones of Björling, but Bergonzi’s spinto voice is handsomely beautiful, while his audible delight and masterly musicianship are seminars in singing for any aspiring tenor and a source of pleasure for any opera lover. The recordings, culled from the Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, and Philips catalogs, present the tenor in clear, dynamic sound.
between the kiss and the chaos by Tracy Silverman
Tiny Desk Concert: Tracy Silverman
What informs almost every bar…is the blazing virtuosity of Tracy Silverman…you will be astonished that anybody can play the fiddle like that.’ -Chicago Tribune
In this ear-grabbing new release from Delos, revel in both the compositional wizardry and the stunning electric violin virtuosity of Tracy Silverman: perhaps the leading exponent of his instrument. Like quite a few other leading composers of our day, he spices his heady creations with classic American genres like jazz and rock, achieving a fascinating contemporary fusion that will beguile a huge range of modern listeners. The recording showcases both the compositional wizardry and the stunning electric violin chops of Tracy Silverman: a leading virtuoso of his instrument. The main fare, Between the Kiss and the Chaos, is a catchy fusion of jazz, rock and classical that promises to attract a huge range of modern listeners The esteemed Calder Quartet provides expert and enthusiastic collaboration; all is captured in Delos’ hallmark sonic glory.
Music for Heart and Breath by Richard Reed Parry
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Weekend Edition: Richard Reed Parry Turns Musicians Into Metronomes
Music for Heart and Breath is Richard Reed Parry’s debut as classical composer who is mostly known from the Grammy Nominated Uber Indie Rock Band Arcade Fire.
Richard is a multi-instrumentalist and composer, drawing his influences from classical music, folk and electronica. This is his first core classical release that finds its home at Deutsche Grammophon. The album features various compositions for Heart and Breath for various ensembles, as well as small interludes (Interruptions) The concept behind Heart and Breath is that every musician involved in the piece generates his own tempo by listening to his/her pulse during the performance. Fragile and intimate, these stunningly created performance effects are the basis for this conceptual compositional approach.
“Music for Heart and Breath is a series of compositions that use involuntarily moving organs of the human body (specifically the lungs and the heart) as performance parameters. There are no time signatures: the tempos and rhythms are always governed by either the heart rates or the breathing rates of the individual players. In the case of the latter, the performers are instructed to play directly in sync with their own or another player’s individual breathing (playing at the speed of their inhalations, their exhalations or both). To enable the players to hear and play in sync with their own heartbeats, they wear stethoscopes and, naturally, generally play quietly.”
The music is performed by an exciting line-up of musicians, produced by Bryce Dessner Nico Muhly (Conductor, celeste/piano), Bryce & Aaron Dessner (guitar) from The National, Kronos Quartet, the ensemble Ymusic.
The 3 Tenors in Concert 1994 by Luciano Pavarotti, Plácido Domingo, José Carreras
Buy CD + DVD | Arkiv
All Things Considered: How The 3 Tenors Sang The Hits And Changed The Game
Recorded live on stage on the eve of one of the world’s greatest sporting events, The 3 Tenors In Concert 1994 re-united four of classical music’s premier and most popular talents. The legendary tenors José Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti, together with conductor Zubin Mehta, celebrated the finale to soccer’s 1994 World Cup with a concert described as “probably the biggest single musical event in history.”
Brought together for the 1990 World Cup in Italy, The 3 Tenors and Mehta joined forces again, this time in Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium on July 16th 1994 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Los Angeles Music Center Opera Chorus, to perform a selection of operatic arias and international favorites specially orchestrated by composer/arranger Lalo Schifrin. The result is an outstanding album, reflecting a unique event, featuring three legendary performers who share a united passion for opera and football.
The concert culminated in Pavorotti’s famed performance of Puccini’s “Nessun Dorma,” which is now engrained in soccer culture worldwide.
Do Not Sell at Any Price: The Wild, Obsessive Hunt for the World’s Rarest 78 rpm Records by Amanda Petrusich
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As Heard on Public Radio:
NPR: History in the Groove
Soundcheck: Chasing the Rarest 78 rpm’s
A celebration of 78rpm record subculture reveals the growing value of rare records and the determined efforts of their collectors and archivists, drawing on historical research and preserver interviews to explore the music of blues artists who have been lost to the modern world.
Mandatory Fun by Weird Al Yankovic
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KCRW: Weird Al Yankovic is Back!
Weekend Edition: Weird Al On Parody in the Age of You Tube
Dinner Party Download: Weird Al Answers for His Word Crime
WNYC: Weird Al - The Sporkful INterview
GPB: Weird Al Parody “Tacky” Lampoons Pharrell’s Happy and We Love It
Weird Al Yankovic’s next album Mandatory Fun — his first since 2011′s Alpocalypse — arrives on July 15th from RCA, right smack dab in the middle of the summer, where it’s guaranteed to chase the long, hot dog days away. But Mandatory Fun could also be Weird Al’s final studio album. The comic songwriter posted on his blog last year that, since the album is his last under his current record contract, he’s “weighing his options.” All of which is to say that he may just move to digitally distributing his work himself and continue to fill us with joy and happiness in a slightly different way. In any case, Al has unveiled the full list of tracks on Mandatory Fun, but not the songs these tracks will be parodying, prompting his many fans to formulate a multitude of theories.
Wild Animals by Trampled By Turtles
First Listen: Trampled By Turtles, ‘Wild Animals’
The Current: Album Review by Bill DeVille
NPR: All Songs TV with Trampled by Turtles
On Wild Animals, Trampled by Turtles seventh studio album, themes of impermanence run deep, both lyrically and sonically. The quintet s hybrid folk sound continues its evolution pushing the band further into the grey area between genres that defies pigeonholing.
From their beginnings on the Midwestern festival circuit, they have reached new heights with each album. Wild Animals is the sound of a band at the peak of their potential, strengthened from a decade together, winning some and losing some, but growing none-the-less. The album captures the intense nature that goes with being alive, melding the universal and the personal.
1000 Forms of Fear by Sia
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Morning Edition: A Reluctant Star, Sia Deals With Fame On Her Own Terms
Singer/songwriter/producer/massive hit maker Sia will be releasing her brand new album 1000 FORMS OF FEAR on July 8thon RCA/Monkey Puzzle Records. 1000 FORMS OF FEAR was produced by Greg Kurstin* and recorded at Echo Studio in Los Angeles.
The first single from 1000 FORMS OF FEAR was written by Sia and Jesse Shatkin and produced by her longtime collaborator Greg Kurstin, along with Shatkin. The video for Sia’s “Chandelier” has exploded on line with over 6.5 million views in it’s first week, and stars an incredibly compelling dance performance by Maddie Zeigler (age 11) of the Lifetime Television show Dance Moms.
Raves Pitchfork of the video and song: “Sia’s voice blasts off, the swelling strings propelling her past her contemporaries in the inspirational-pop stratosphere. It’s a jaw-dropping vocal performance that’s enough to convince you she could have a stadium-touring career of her own. The video is filled with the same irrepressible spirit that colors this song.” Time Magazine calls “Chandelier” “the year’s most sobering party anthem…a disarming, unforgettable listen.”
An astonishingly prolific hit maker and songwriter, Sia has penned several monster hits over the last few years. In 2013 alone, she’s crafted songs for pop icons including Rihanna (“Diamonds”), Katy Perry (“Double Rainbow”), Britney Spears (“Perfume”), Beyoncé (“Pretty Hurts”) and Celine Dion, as well as working with Diplo, The Weeknd, Kylie Minogue, Angel Haze, and executive producing label mate Brooke Candy’s forthcoming album. Sia is also the featured vocalist on some of the most massive hits she has written for others including “Titanium” with David Guetta, “Beautiful Pain” with Eminem, and “Wild Ones” with Flo Rida. Her most recent release is her hit single “Elastic Heart” from “The Hunger Games Soundtrack” with The Weeknd and Diplo (*produced by Diplo, co-produced by Greg Kurstin) which appears on 1000 FORMS OF FEAR. She also served as executive producer of Brooke Candy’s EP entitled Opulence and Brooke Candy s forthcoming album.
Wish I Was Here (Music From The Motion Picture)
All Songs Considered: Song Premiere: An Unlikely Collaboration From Cat Power And Coldplay
All Songs Considered: Song Premiere: Bon Iver Writes A Tune For Zach Braff
All Songs Considered: Song Premiere: The Shins And Zach Braff Reunite
The soundtrack features 15 songs, including new music from The Shins, Bon Iver, and Cat Power + Coldplay.
Wish I Was Here (written and directed by Zach Braff) is the story of Aidan Bloom, a struggling actor, father and husband, who at 35 is still trying to find his identity; a purpose for his life. He and his wife are barely getting by financially and Aidan passes his time by fantasizing about being the great futuristic Space-Knight he d always dreamed he d be as a little kid. The film stars Zach Braff, Kate Hudson, Mandy Patinkin, Jim Parsons, Ashley Greene, Josh Gad, and James Avery in his final film.
Jungle by Jungle
KCRW Presents: Jungle, ‘Busy Earnin” (Live)
The Current: Album of the week: Jungle’s self-titled debut
The Current: Jungle perform in the Current’s studios
Based around a core musical duo known simply as J and T who expand to a thrilling seven piece live band, Jungle make mesmeric, modern soul with true global appeal. Combining what The Guardian notes as “tribal in terms of rhythm but postpunk in sensibility” and Brooklyn Vegan proclaims has “a real vintage-ness here, recalling the period of funk and soul just as those genres started transitioning into disco,” Jungle has quickly perked the curiosity of media across the globe.
The Black Market by Rise Against
“The Black Market” is the 7th album from one of the most revered punk bands around today. The new album features the hit single “I Don’t Want To Be Here Anymore”.
The Feast of The Broken Heart by Hercules & Love Affair
Hercules & Love Affair s third and most versatile album to date, The Feast of The Broken Heart, sees visionary founder Andy Butler and his ever-evolving musical collective pushing the boundaries of house music, disco, and pop to create a collection of stunningly original new dancefloor anthems. Tracks like the banging “Do You Feel The Same?” highlight a remarkable roll call of diverse vocal talents, including critically acclaimed singer/songwriters Krystle Warren and John Grant as well as new discoveries Gustaph and Rouge Mary. Produced by Butler in collaboration with Viennese electro specialists Ha-Ze Factory and industrial pioneer Mark Pistel (Consolidated, Michael Franti), The Feast of The Broken Heart is Hercules & Love Affair at its provocative, propulsive best, coupling emotionally powerful songcraft with daring dancefloor experimentalism.
World Peace Is None Of Your Business by Morrissey
First Listen: Morrissey, ‘World Peace Is None Of Your Business’
Morrissey is one of few iconic musicians making radical, counter-cultural work, and Harvest Records is proud to release his latest album on July 15th, 2014. World Peace Is None Of Your Business explores the tragedy of human apathy in our turbulent, modern era. Morrissey’s career as a writer reaches new lyrical heights but maintains his signature humor, drama, and emotional longing. World Peace Is None Of Your Business was produced by Joe Chiccarelli at La Fabrique Studios in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France.