AME's first recording on the American Modern Recordings (AMR) label features Blair McMillen and Stephen Gosling, the pianists from our critically-acclaimed Powerhouse Pianists concert. Hailed by The New York Times as "Brilliant young stars...The dynamic duo of contemporary pianists," this release contains some of the greatest works from the contemporary piano repertoire, including works by Chester Biscardi, Annie Gosfield, Lee Hyla, Eric Moe, Conlon Nancarrow, Joan Tower, Perry Townsend, George Tsontakis and Mischa Zupko.
An eclectic program... McMillen offers a rarity right off the bat, with Chester Biscardi's softly glittering Piano Sonata, then completely changes direction with Lee Hyla s stark Basic Training and Eric Moe s Where Branched Thoughts Murmur in the Wind, a brief, delicate essay. He ends with Brooklyn, October 5, 1941, Annie Gosfield's striking tribute to the Brooklyn Dodgers (played with baseballs and a mitt), in an unusual set delivered with tautness and finesse. Gosling begins with George Tsontakis s enigmatic Bagatelle, which at one point hovers over some very Brahmsian chords, followed by the darkly mysterious Episodes for Piano by Perry Townsend. Then Conlon Nancarrow bubbles into the mix with Tango?, brimming with wit. The cascade of notes continues with Joan Tower's Or Like a... an Engine, its stammering title from a John Ashbery poem, and Gosling really floors the gas pedal for E-Machines, a hyperactive jolt by David Rakowski. Finally comes Five Études for Piano by Mischa Zupko, clearly influenced by Ligeti, and Gosling gives them a scientific accuracy, as if surveying their intricacies with a microscope. Engineer John Yannelli, capturing both pianists in the hall at Sarah Lawrence College, has given these dynamic artists a clear soundstage against which even the minutest details register in sharp focus. --The Juilliard Journal
You could call Mr. McMillen and Mr. Gosling the dynamic duo of contemporary music pianists in New York... thoroughly impressive... --The New York Times