Automotive Deals HPCC Amazon Fashion Learn more Discover it Thank you Scientist Fire TV Stick Sun Care Handmade school supplies Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer CafeSociety CafeSociety CafeSociety  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Introducing new colors All-New Kindle Oasis AutoRip in CDs & Vinyl Water Sports

Lang: Death Speaks

April 30, 2013 | Format: MP3

$7.99
Also available in CD Format
Song Title Artist
Time
Popularity  
30
1
4:24
30
2
3:45
30
3
5:02
30
4
6:19
30
5
4:25
30
6
18:13
Your Amazon Music account is currently associated with a different marketplace. To enjoy Prime Music, go to Your Music Library and transfer your account to Amazon.com (US).
  

Product Details

Customer Reviews

5 star
71%
4 star
29%
3 star
0%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 7 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

By T. Fisher VINE VOICE on June 12, 2013
Format: Audio CD
"Death Speaks" is my first exposure to composer David Lang's work, and I must say I am very impressed. The album is actually two works -- the "Death Speaks" cycle of five songs, and a separate, longer work, "Depart".

The quavering, otherworldly vocals of Shara Worden (of My Brightest Diamond) in the role of Death are complemented beautifully by the atmospheric, sometimes plinking, sometimes more threatening instrumentation of Nico Muhly (piano), Bryce Dessner (guitar) and Owen Pallett (violin). The most forceful musical passages are punctuated by Worden on bass drum.

Inspired by "Death and the Maiden", Lang went through Franz Schubert's songs (of which there are some 600) and noted the passages about death, especially in which death appears to speak in a personal, specific way. He translated these text excerpts -- sometimes freely -- and built his own song cycle around them.

Death's messages are frequently benign, even attractive -- promising gentle rest alongside protestations of love. However, there is an eery edge to it all. In the final song of the cycle, a man's voice (Owen Pallett's) joins that of Death, singing harmony. I perceived that as suggesting the dying man's ultimate acceptance of the inevitable, and succumbing freely to death's ministrations.

"Depart" is a separate 18-minute work after the song cycle, performed by Maya Beiser on cello (largely playing a slowly modulating drone) and a small chorus of three female and one male voice (largely modulating pitch on the single vowel sound "ah"). I found it very well placed after the final song of "Death Speaks", in which the human object of Death's attention seemingly gives in.
Read more ›
1 Comment 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
It seems David Lang has begun a new, introspective phase of his life. Beginning with 2008's The Little Match Girl Passion, Lang has been exploring the fragile and transient aspects of life. This year's release, Death Speaks, is an obvious continuation of that stream.

Soprano Shara Worden's tremendous voice complements the goals of this album magnificently. On the first track, "You Will Return", her fragile tone is suspended amid the music-box plucking of accompanying musicians Owen Pallett, Nico Muhly, and Bryce Dessner. The second track, "I Hear You", is more aggressive in nature, while the rest of the album continues a low hum of reflection. The final track, "Depart", is not part of the song cycle and features Maya Beyser's multi-tracked cello with four wordless voices; it's a captivating 18-minute meditation on the afterlife.

To put it plainly, this album is incredible. I haven't been able to put it down since I got it, and neither will you. The quality of the recording is top-notch, and I'm not sure the playing could be any better. I will say that if you're considering buying this as your first David Lang album, I may point you elsewhere: Little Match Girl Passion, This Was Written By Hand, or So Percussion's self-titled album are probably more `mainstream' Lang. Regardless, this is a wonderful album that isn't just a good listen, it's a point of reflection.
Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
David Lang's "Death Speaks" is another beautiful work that is both intimate and epic. Lang takes text from Franz Schubert's art songs, specifically anytime Death is speaking to the living. The music - a quartet made up of vocalist Shara Worden, guitarist Bryce Dessner, pianist (and fellow composer) Nico Muhly, and violinist Owen Pallett - is very clearly Lang's voice, yet much of it new even for him. Although each individual movement in Lang's work contains text from multiple art songs, he still manages to utilize his own version of text painting to create a story. The final track, "Depart," is a beautiful meditation; also on the subject of death, it was commissioned for a French hospital morgue. Listen with headphones at the very least, with a full surround stereo at best, as the last piece especially utilizes spatial location of the cello and voices.
Comment 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is to post-minimalist alt-classical what works like The Photographer and Music for 18 Musicians were to minimalism proper. It adds just enough raw emotion to transcend its arty base while at the same time affirming that this is a new artistic musical language that is here to stay. The lyrics are never homiletic or even linear; they are constantly startling me with some unexpected image or tangent, as if Rilkean romanticism were being refracted through Celan, Gertrude Stein, maybe even e. e. cummings. The first half is a suite of songs delivered in an admirably confident and largely uninflected contralto supplied by Shara Worden. It flirts with the lugubrious and the repetitious just enough to make a statement; this is anti-hip hip music, and it simply won't be relegated to easy background music. Prepare to wrestle with this song suite. Then give yourself over to the sheer otherworldly transport of bliss that is the second, instrumental half -- an astral projection into disembodiment and etherealness that maintained me in its lush and no-nonsense orbit and gave me a palpable ache when it faded out on its final chord. Can life in all its palpable minutiae and emotion give way to death? Can death usher in a kind of afterlife? The music doesn't struggle with either question so much as affirm, quietly and hauntingly, that in music this fresh and gorgeous, anything is possible. A new instant classic.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Look for Similar Items by Category