CD Lukas Ligeti: Mystery System (CD 985420),
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Lukas Ligeti: Mystery System

  • 1. Pattern Transformation, for 4 players on 2 marimbas
    2. Moving Houses, for string quartet
    3. Independence, for percussion quartet
    4. New York to Neptune, for string quartet & drum machine
    5. Delta Space, for pianist, Yamaha Disklavier & sampler
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 7099

  • Credits
    ProducerBruno Letort; Lukas Ligeti
    EngineerBruno Letort; Domonkos Tmr; Sheldon Steiger; Istvan Zakarias; Lawrence Manchester

    Personnel: Todd Reynolds , Mary Rowell (violin); Ralph Farris (viola); Denys Viollet, Dorothy Lawson (cello); Kathleen Supove (piano); Kroly Bojtos, Zoltn Rcz, Aurl Holl, Zoltn Vczi (percussion).
    Audio Mixer: Sheldon Steiger.
    Liner Note Author: Lukas Ligeti.
    Recording information: Avatar Studio, New York, NY; New York University School of Education Recording Studi; Paris, France.
    Editor: Zsuzsa Dvork.
    Photographer: Chien-Yin Chen.
    Recordings from Budapest, Paris, and New York City are combined on this program of compositional undertakings from Lukas Ligeti. What comes across as a refined classical atmosphere -- at least on a superficial impression -- finally gives way to something more freaky with the final piece, a lengthy encounter between a hungry sampler and pianist Kathleen Supove entitled "Delta Space." Most of the CD consists of an epic sandwiching of a string quartet, written in the '90s and amended the following decade, in between two pieces crafted for the Amadinda Percussion Group of Hungary in which the keyboard percussion music of Uganda has been influential. Ligeti, a percussionist himself, does not play anywhere on this recording. African music is one of his major interests, but his liner notes indicate a wider inspirational reach in the string quartet. There are listeners who claim they cannot hear what the composer says are echoes of electric Miles Davis and "Eleanor Rigby," even if the disc is held flat against their ears, but no matter. Of major importance in this composer's work is that these seemingly required and engagingly rampant diverse interests play out with the smoothness of an ancient tapestry rather than coming across, as they sometimes do, like a bunch of maggots finishing off the corpse of whatever genres. "Delta Space" is lots of fun, a quarter of an hour that rushes by with limitless imagination. Yet the real masterpieces of this collection are the pair of percussion pieces. Linked by the luxury of the performing group's intense interest as well as several important connecting ideas, the simply titled "Pattern Transformation" and "Independence" present a deep well of ideas and textures. Each listen is something like the vagabond approaching the well with a deep hat to drink out of. These performances are indeed refreshing, the later "Independence" taking on a more ambitious length and series of developments. With both pieces, deep concentration will reward the listener with new, seemingly cached secrets upon each repeat. ~ Eugene Chadbourne

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