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Sentient Music: Compositions for Guitar

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Audio CD, April 26, 2005
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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 26, 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Centaur
  • ASIN: B000850ITU
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,327,598 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dennis C. Repino on April 30, 2005
Format: Audio CD
After listening to a good portion of classical guitarist James Piorkowski's previous recordings, I must say that his 2004 Centaur Records release Sentient Music serves the listener quite well. Mr. Piorkowski, who was a member of the internationally acclaimed Buffalo Guitar Quartet for nearly two decades, has focused his attention to composition, a fact that is widely evident in both this and his previous recording, Freedom Flight: Guitar Music by Ortiz and Piorkowski. Sentient Music features a diverse amount of original material for the solo guitar, with each selection meticulously composed, performed, and subsequently recorded.

The recording opens with a set of three compositions, namely Happy Feet, which features contrasting meters and percussive effects, Who Has Gathered the Wind in His Fists?, and the quasi-homage to Debussy appropriately titled Claude. Next on the program is a set of three evocative pieces inspired by three very different towns and villages. The first of the three, Veliko Turnovo, is composed in four parts, one for each hill of the Bulgarian town. Uraca, my personal favorite, is a slowly unfolding musical tale that recalls the small Venezuelan village of the same name, painting sound images of the nearby river and waterfall. The set ends with Brasov, which is inspired by the Romanian resort town and offers moments of mystique and adventure. The recording concludes with the Sentient Preludes, a set of ten contrasting miniatures that were originally intended to serve a pedagogical function. The pieces explore the polyphonic capacity and specific techniques of the guitar, and draw Mr. Piorkowski's recording to a satisfying close.

The compact disc, which was engineered by Dave St.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Bianchi on May 5, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Sentient Music is a colorful array of classical guitar works which explore a range of emotions while evoking musical imagery. The first part of the disc includes a group of pieces which conjure different moods including the uplifting feel of the aptly titled "Happy Feet" as well as the contemplative "Claude".

The concept of painting pictures with music is taken a step further in "Three Places" which contains 3 pieces that depict the foreign lands Veiliko Turnovo (Bulgaria), Uraca (Venezuela) and Brasov (Romania). My personal favorite is Veliko Turnovo. Piorkowski has done an excellent job in translating to the guitar a musical view of the cities foreign beauty in which an ancient traveler once described as "the second after Constantinople" in terms of beauty and might. Each piece has a unique feel and will take the listener away.

Ending the recording are 10 Sentient Preludes which once again musically depict their various titles. Each prelude is cleverly written, enjoyable to hear and will surely evoke a range of images in the listener's mind. Personal favorites are "Dream Interrupted", "Pastorale" and "Adoration".

"Sentient Music:Compositions for Guitar" would be a welcoming addition to any music lover's collection. All in all, I give the CD 5 stars and consider these works an enrichment to the ongoing evolution of classical guitar repertoire.
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