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Hartke, Stephen - Tituli / Cathedral in the Trashing Rain - Hilliard Ensemble (The)


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"A former professional singer, the American composer Stephen Hartke clearly has a nose for unusual but singable texts. Tituli is a 42-minute suite on some of the oldest surviving Latin inscriptions, including fragments and aphorisms, but also a nearly complete and very touching elegy for a six-year-old boy. The settings enrich the Hilliard Ensemble's usual smooth four-voice close harmony with a third tenor, while violin and occasional percussion add extra colouristic layers. The result is strangely timeless, as if Hartke is trying to create a sort of early music of the distant future. Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain is on the face of it more straightforward, a setting for the Hilliard's regular quartet of a poem translated from the Japanese of Takamura Kotaro. ... Hartke's inclusion of occasional lines of Japanese, and his musical allusions to plainchant and medieval Notre Dame organum, highlight the gulfs between ages and cultures. Impeccable performances, recording and presentation enhance the effect of this fascinating disc.
(BBC Music Magazine)

Tituli / Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain is the first all Stephen Hartke disc on the New Series. His music was introduced on the label through Michelle Makarski's 1995 solo recording Caoine.
Stephen Hartke's music grows out of a variety of impulses and inspirations, including poetry, plainchant, the paintings of Joan Mir. In the case of both Tituli and Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain, the inspiration comes, at least initially, from words: Tituli is built on fragments of inscriptions carved and scratched on ancient Roman artifacts, and Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain is a setting of a poem by Japanese poet and sculptor Takamura Kotaro (1883-1956). But as playwright and poet Philip Littell notes in the CD's liner essay, "Hartke's music is about a double listening, first to the sounds themselves, with the apposite yet anachronistic marimba and violin combined with singers in Tituli, the evocations of medieval organum in Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain and, next, to the voices in the text calling out: look at me, remember me, listen to me, witness me. These may be humble and fragmentary voices, but they are possessed of an energy and a will to speak that has triggered the composer to remake their world." Tituli / Cathedral in the Thrashing Rain is the first ECM New Series title to be released in hybrid CD/SACD format, meaning that it can be played on either a standard CD player or on a Super Audio CD player. SACD format provides superior sonic warmth and clarity, thanks to the Direct Stream Digital system (DSD), which samples music at 64 times the rate of conventional CDs. This album is currently available in the US only.

The Hilliard Ensemble
David James, countertenor
Rogers Covey-Crump, tenor
Steven Harrold, tenor
Andreas Hirtreiter, tenor
Gordon Jones, baritone
Michelle Makarski, violin
Lynn Vartan, marimba, cymbals, shaker, cup bells, wood block
Javier Diaz, marimba, cymbals, shaker, cup bells, wood block
Donald Crockett, conductor

Recorded February 2003

Fakta
Artikelnummer ECM1861
Streckkod 0028947605126
Utgivningsdatum 2005-06-06
Kategori Klassiskt
Skivbolag ECM
Enhet CD
Antal enheter 1
Utövare
Artister Hilliard Ensemble (The)
Kompositörer Hartke, Stephen
Disk: 1
1 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 06:08
2 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 02:03
3 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 05:43
4 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 12:03
5 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 02:54
6 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 06:20
7 Tituli (for five solo male voices, violin and two 06:44
8 Cathedral in the thrashing rain (for countertenor, 18:21
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