Takemitsu: Quotation of Dream (20/21 Series)
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Top Customer Reviews
Recommended without reservation.
Quotation of Dream includes seven pieces from the last decade of Takemitsu's life (he died in 1996), including the premiere recording of the title piece. The disc begins and ends with fanfares that, while perhaps effective as aural bookends, are to my ears undistinguished. The music that lies in between, however, is extraordinarily compelling.
Takemitsu's style in these works is generally meditative, with frequent slow, quiet passages, strings predominating. But there are dramatic incidents and color as well: flaring brass, rising like a mountainous island from a tropical sea; raindrops of chimes; drawn-out woodwind lines weaving sinuously through swirls of massed violins. The music sometimes pivots around silent pauses, like the empty spaces in Zen painting. In Quotation of Dream, twin pianos (played by Paul Crossley and Peter Serkin, respectively) dominate the foreground with gentle cascades of notes while orchestral clouds form in the background.
The musical language is often reminiscent of Debussy and Ravel; in mood (though not in technique) it can resemble the slowest and most mysterious moments in music of the second Viennese school (Schoenberg, Berg, Webern et al.). The subtlety and elusiveness probably owe something to the composer's Japanese heritage. But this is no cut-and-paste job; the overall impression is startlingly original.Read more ›
The disc is framed by two antiphonal fanfares written in 1987, "Day Signal" and "Night Signal", together called "Signals from Heaven". They are closely related, both using dissonance to suggest the changing of the skies, but with one inverted from the other to suggest an opposite tone.
A quip of Takemitsu was "I am self-taught, but I consider Debussy my teacher." The first major work here, "Quotation of Dream - Say sea, take me!" (1991), is a tribute to Debussy using quotations from his "La Mer" as if the composer was trying to recreate the piece he had just woken up from dreaming. The title also refers to its use of some material from "Dream/Window", an earlier composition present on this disc. "Quotation of Dream" is a lovely tribute to the composer's greatest inspiration, but the majority of the work comes only from Takemitsu. His use of a zig-zag of harmony, of orchestral colour that comes forth and recedes like waves is nothing you have ever heard before in orchestral music.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I recently bought a second copy of what is my favorite cd of all time. I discovered ToruTakemitsu in the early 1970s and have been following his music ever since. Read morePublished 15 months ago by blackbrownbeige
The title piece is a perfect example of Takemitsu's orchestral writing, literally melding Japanese style with western using Debussy's "La Mer". Hauntingly beautiful.Published on April 29, 2014 by Electric Head
All works on this disc were written between 1985 and 1993 and are thus examples of Takemitsu's later `Japanese garden' style with its strong influence by impressionism, Debussy in... Read morePublished on November 22, 2009 by G.D.
This disc offers well-played performances of all these compositions, but as with all of the recordings I have heard of Knussen recording Takemitsu's music, the results are a bit... Read morePublished on April 19, 2009 by James Rockhill
I have only recently begun listening to Takemitsu. Was introduced at a guitar recital. I have been slowly accumulating more of his compositions. Read morePublished on April 29, 2006 by Strat Man