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Audio CD, September 9, 2003
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Œuvres de Lou Harrison, David Sanford, Osvaldo Golijov, Luna Pearl Woolf, Robert Stern, Steven Mackey, Augusta Read Thomas, Tod Machover, Toby Twining, Matt Haimovitz / Matt Haimovitz, violoncelle

In the age of sterile, hopelessly unimaginative "crossover" projects, cellist Matt Haimovitz earned a solid reputation with his passionate, earnestly invigorating advocay of the Bach Cello Suites in non-traditional venues for classical music. But his exciting project here on Anthem goes even several steps further: rather than rely on a safe brand-name composer, Haimovitz has put together a program of mostly unfamiliar music celebrating both American composers and the unfettered capacity of his instrument. Lou Harrison's prelude from "Rhymes with Silver" is spiked with a taste of baroque linearity but commands with its uncontrived, openhearted melancholy. A sense of musical playfulness dominates in Golijov's Omaramar, a Gardel-inspired fantasia, while one of the disc's most stunning showpieces is Haimovitz's take on a pioneering early piece by Tod Machover, With Dadaji in Paradise, which seemingly explores every inch of the instrument's landscape (Haimovitz can also be heard playing "hypercello" on the latter's intriguing recording the Hyperstring Triology). Two of the pieces were inspired by the atrocity of 9/11: David Sanford's effective Seventh Avenue Kaddish--where the soloist functions, as Haimovitz sees it, as a kind of "professional mourner"--and Toby Twining's microtonally obsessed 9:11 Blues. For all of the in-your-face, upfront emotional directness that is becoming Haimovitz's signature, he clearly also relishes the mind games of Steve Mackey's labyrinth of variations in Rhondo Variations. The title track, meanwhile, stands as a brilliant tribute not only to one of his musical heroes but succeeds in undoing what Haimovtiz has referred to as the electric guitar's "testosterone monopoly." Anthem is not only for fans of the cello and new music but for anyone tired of stale, preformulated patterns. --Thomas May

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Hendrix / Haimovitz : Anthem (recorded live at CBGB October 11, 2002-first recording)
  2. Lou Harrison: Prelude (from Rhymes With Silver)
  3. David Sanford: Seventh Avenue Kaddish (first recording)
  4. Osvaldo Golijov: Omaramor (first recording)
  5. Luna Pearl Woolf: Impromptu (first recording)
  6. Robert Stern: Recitative (Yom Teruah) (first recording)
  7. Steven Mackey: Rhondo Variations
  8. Augusta Read Thomas: Bells Ring Summer (first recording)
  9. Tod Machover: With Dadaji in Paradise (first recording)
  10. Toby Twining: 9:11 Blues (first recording)
  11. Matt Haimovitz: Truth from Above (improvisation on a Vespers melody--first recording)

Product Details

  • Composer: Osvaldo Golijov, Matt Haimovitz, Lou Harrison, Tod Machover, Steven Mackey, et al.
  • Audio CD (September 9, 2003)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Artemis Classics
  • Run Time: 71 minutes
  • ASIN: B0000AQS6F
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #469,327 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Marc Salz on October 4, 2003
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Matt Haimovitz's new CD demonstrates that contemporary music is alive,well and filled with purpose and passion. Many listeners who dismiss most new music as too cerebral have a surprise waiting for them in these emotional anthems to America written by our own composers. The irony of Jimi Hendrix's Woodstock rendition of the"Star Spangled Banner"is the starting point for a musical reflection on the current conditions of our nation. The loss of life on 9/11 is beautifully recalled in a few pieces. For an Israeli born musician, the Jewish themes take on an extra poignancy in light of the recent events in Israel. Not since Peter Serkin's contemporary piano commissions has there been such a courageous effort to get this music out to well deserved public acclaim.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Sokste on November 3, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I went to Matt's concert here in Minneapolis supporting this CD with a friend, and we both had a delightful time. The concert including some of Matt's more traditional renderings, and both those and his newer music were wonderful. Everyone in the audience had an excellent experience.
I bought the CD, brought it home and played it for my 10-yr-old, who has been playing cello for 4 years. She didn't like it at all. I thought she might be interested in the wide range of sounds and effects that Matt is able to draw from his instrument. But her age outweighed her musical appreciation.
So it's for adults clearly, and that's fine. It's one of the most interesting things I've listed to in a long time. The Hendrix piece inventively moved ahead and was different from the original, yet retained all the power and impact of its predecessor.
The other political pieces were very evocative. This work gives me hope in a way that's hard to describe. It's exciting to hear another's response to what's been happening - the depth and intensity of which speaks to the resiliency of the human spirit.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 29, 2003
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Matt Haimovitz has published many wonderful CDs, and goes to new dimensions with this eclectic and fascinating contemporary CD. Aimed at a crossover audience, he brings the cello to life for a new generation of music listeners. If you're looking for something fresh, different and interesting, pick up this CD and give it a careful listen.
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