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Blu-ray Review

Peter Gregson

Sono Luminus 92191


  • Found
  • Time
  • Cycle
  • Chorale
  • Held
  • Touch
  • Turn
  • Lost
Peter Gregson, synthesizer
Inscape Ensemble
Sono Luminus DSL-92191 2Discs CD+Blu-ray Audio
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As a writer at Classical Net, it's my job to tell you whether I think a disc is worth hearing. The music on this particular album is indeed very beautiful. All of it feels strikingly original; the meditative and repetitive moments don't call anyone else quite to mind. Sure, there are moments where there is a hint of Glass or Reich, but nothing is terribly troubling in that regard. Any of this music could serve as backing for a film, or for studying, or just as pure music. The instrumentations include multiple keyboards, and the small string ensemble known as Inscape takes the string parts. It really does establish Gregson as someone who I want to hear more of, and I am Classical Net's old fogey, endlessly reviewing Beethoven and Brahms.

Describing this music is challenging, not least because the composer himself declines to in his liner notes. Inviting the listener to explore his music independently, he does offer typical composer commentary. By that I mean that it is rather vague, and flowery in prose. Although much of this music shares enough commonality to be seen as a suite of sorts, I suggest taking each piece at a time, rather than viewing them as a cogent whole. There is certainly enough personality in each work. Everyone plays marvelously, though the cello sounds huge throughout.

The other part of my job is to tell you whether I think you should support a project with your purchase. My answer is #Unless you have the press release handy, or are willing to Google search the album, the box doesn't offer any clues as to what this music is. Is it a solo vocal album, or a piano album? Only Gregson is listed on the box. You won't know who is playing, and I find that inexcusable for a classical album. These artists work hard, and deserve credit as such. Not even the composer gets any credit for his performances, and even in the booklet, who is doing what is frustratingly unclear. For a great and adventurous label like Sono Luminus, that's nothing short of disappointing. Ultimately, this is a release I'm happy to have left my comfort zone for, but I am afraid that the complete lack of easily accessible information on the performances may turn some people away, despite the usual high standards of the house.

Copyright © 2015, Brian Wigman