Sunday, April 11, 2010

Cameron Carpenter (Organ) - Revolutionary!

    KOMMERSANT (Saint Petersburg, Russia) for December 5, 2009:
    One American organist has emerged, like a Jack-in-the-Box, onto the international stage. To say that Cameron Carpenter is a virtuoso is to say nothing. He is an exorbitant virtuoso, the Vladimir Horowitz of the organ. Following graduation from The Juilliard School in 2006, his web cast concert on the virtual pipe organ included Frederick Chopin’s Revolutionary Etude, in which the most virtuosic passages were played on the pedal keyboard.
    The image of an organist is as a self-absorbed intellectual, analyst, and aesthete. That is not just a cliché, but a realistic description of a typical concert organist. Carpenter breaks that stereotype. He appears in various eye-popping, skin-tight costumes, the most familiar of which is all white with Swarovski crystal elements; and he acts more like a pop musician. That implies his wide-ranging choice of repertoire, as well: he has made 200 arrangements for the organ of various compositions, including classical and jazz piano works and such complex orchestral works as Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 (the latter at age 15).
    One can say that it is too much of a circus, and that it is better to listen to Chopin played on the piano, sans pedals. Our cold musical age can demand such a straight division of labor. But Carpenter seems to appear from the time of Franz Liszt and Nicolò Paganini. In his playing there is the wild passion of virtuosos of the past, who destroyed borders of genres and broadened repertoire for their instruments.
    What Cameron Carpenter lacks, however, is cheap populism. He is a musician and interpreter.

    Artist: Cameron Carpenter. Rieger Organ, Basilika Vierzehnheiligen
    Released: 2008
    Label: Telarc
    Catalog N°: 60711
    Genre: Classical, Organ
    File Format: eac_wv_cue_log 229mb, mp3 (lame) VBR-250 V0 113mb, DVD Decrypter ISO 0,99gb, covers complete 41mb

    26 Reviews
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    Average Customer Review
    4.0 out of 5 stars (26 customer reviews)

    Revolutionary showcases an artist who is not only breaking ground, but who runs a musical gamut that any musician would be extremely hard-pressed to match. There are only four organ works included. Three are major pinnacles of the organ repertoire (the blistering, nearly unplayable Etude in Octaves by the French modernist Jeanne Demessieux; Prelude and Fugue in B major by Marcel Dupré; and Bach's deeply moving chorale-prelude Now Come, Savior of the Gentiles, while the fourth is the world premiere recording of Cameron's suggestive Love Song No. 1 (2008). The album's major departures, though, are found in Duke Ellington's Solitude (wittily combined with Bach's Sheep May Safely Graze); Liszt's Mephisto Waltz, and Vladimir Horowitz' Carmen Variations. Here are two of Chopin's Études in versions so convincing that they might have been organ music; and Cameron's Evolutionary Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, an outrageous survey of the various instrumental arrangements that made Bach's work famous. All this is recorded not on a pipe organ, but on the equally revolutionary Marshall & Ogletree Virtual Pipe Organ at Trinity Church Wall Street in New York City - an organ that, rising out of the destruction of Trinity's pipe organ on September 11, 2001, continues to challenge the status quo of the pipe organ and the artistic possibilities of organ playing in general.

    01. Chopin: Etude, Op. 10, No 12 in C minor, "The Revolutionary" 03:03
    02. Bach: Toccata and Fugue in D Minor 08:48
    03. Solitude 06:08
    04. Demessieux: Octaves, from Six Etudes Op. 5 03:44
    05. Liszt: Mephisto Waltz No. 1, "The Dance in the Village Inn" 12:18
    06. Carpenter: Love Song No. 1 05:49
    07. Dupre: Prelude and Fugue in B Major, Op. 7, No. 1 06:36
    08. Chopin: Etude in C Major, Op. 10, No. 1 02:38
    09. Bach: Chorale Prelude on Nun komm, der heiden Heiland, BWV 659 04:24
    10. Horowitz: Variations on a theme from Bizet's Carmen 04:42
    11. Carpenter: Homage to Klaus Kinski 06:16

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