Michael Jarrel – “…mais les images restent” (aeon, 2017)

Jarrell: ...mais les images restent...

“…mais les images restent” was released this year by “aeon records”. Album compositions were written by Swiss composer Michael Jarrell and masterfully recorded by Thomas Demenga, Ernesto Molinary, Marino Formenti and WDR Sinfonie orchester Koln and Peter Rundel. Michael Jarrell (1958) was born in Geneva, where he had studied in Conservatory. Later he also studied with Klaus Huber in Freiburg. His works span many genres. In 1982, he won first prizes for composition and went on to win many more, including the Acanthes Prize in 1983, the Beethovenpreis awarded by Bonn in 1986, the Marescotti Prize (1986), Gaudeamus International Composers award, Siemens Forder Preis and many others. From 1986 to 1988, he was resident at the Cité des Arts in Paris, taking part in the computer music course at IRCAM. Michael Jarrell is one of the most famous Swiss composers of his generations. His “spoken opera” “Cassandra” was performed at “OJAI Festival” in 2008.

Michael Jarrell music has interesting and innovative sound. His musical language is full of evocative and innovative instrumentation, extended playing techniques, bright and interesting harmony and combined with numerous different musical expressions. Michael Jarrell mostly writes music for various kinds of chamber ensembles, compositions for solo instruments, symphony orchestras, string quartets and other instrument combinations. French impressionism, post-impressionism, expresionism, modernism and experimental music styles are gently synthesized together. Composer also masterfully use and mix together dodecaphony, serialism, sonoristic music, sonor system sound experiments, aleatory, atonal and tonal music and various extraordinary and self-created composing techniques. Michael Jarrell music has adventurous, fascinating and interesting sound. He tries to create different and individual melody for each instrument, also express wide range of different emotions and characters. Expressive and dramatic solos, lyrical and soft pieces, very bright and loud all orchestra tutti and very silent and relaxing episodes of solo instruments – all Michael Jarrell music is based on contrasting episodes, different and colorful sound, innovative and adventurous musical decisions.

This album compositions are based on innovative musical decisions and intensive sound. The compositions for solo piano, symphony orchestra, solo clarinet were recorded in this album – it’s “Aus Bebung” and “Assonance III” for symphony orchestra, “…mais les images restent…”for solo piano and “…Nachlesse…III – Es bleibt eine zitternde Bebung” for symphony orchestra. All four compositions have especially expressive and vibrant sound. They are based on contrasting and dynamic musical decisions, colorful and interesting sound. Composer masterfully combine together all different musical expressions, playing techniques and dynamics – from very silent and peaceful episodes which have slow tempo music sudden gets to very bright, dynamic, expressive and extremely loud culminations. Each instrument has its own and independent melody with numerous of different playing techniques – various traditional playing techniques such as glissando, pizzicato,wild fast and vibrant arpeggios, staccato, portato and many others are mixed together with innovative and shocking ways of playing. This wide range of playing techniques helps the composer to extract many extraordinary and unusual timbres. All three compositions for symphony orchestra have especially masterful and interesting instrumentation – different instruments play individual melodies, contrasting and interesting musical material and are masterfully combined together in one composition. Composer express many different moods and characters – vivacious, playful, joyful and very loud, expressive or dramatic episodes are masterfully blended with silent, peaceful, soft pieces or with aggressive, provocative and tragic sound. The palette of different moods and sound characters is full of individual and different sounds, unusual timbres and contrasting moods and feelings. The solo composition for piano also is masterfully played and have adventurous sound. This composition has free and not strictly-based form, polyphonic structure and wide range of different playing techniques, unique and unusual methods and manners of playing, musical expressions and other musical language elements. This composition, just like the others, has especially expressive, dramatic, contrasting and fascinating sound. The harmony of all compositions is very interesting – dissonances and consonances are gently mixed together, soft and peaceful chords are suddenly changed by very aggressive, sharp and rigorous pitches. Gorgeous and colorful harmony, dynamic and constantly changing rhythmic, all kinds and types of musical expressions, innovative instrumentation decisions, the best sound quality and outstanding performing of all musicians bring original, fascinating and innovative  sound of this album.

11 thoughts on “Michael Jarrel – “…mais les images restent” (aeon, 2017)”

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