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Scottish Ensemble - Debussy & Takemitsu - Hi-Fi News


01 September 2016
Hi-Fi News
Christopher Breunig

Three string orchestra transcriptions of Debussy (the Quartet arranged by the SE's leader Jonathan morton, the 'Girl With The Flaxen Hair' by Colin Matthews, and 'Jimbo's Lullaby' from the Children's Corner Suite by bassist James Manson – he plays on the recording too) alternate with film-associated music tracks by Takemitsu. His funeral march from Black Rain (emphatically not the Michael Douglas film) is followed by music for a boxer documentary, then Nostalghia, a homage to Tarkovsky. I'm not convinved the Quartet gains from 'upsizing' - few such examples do - but the sleeping little elephant has great charm, while the contrasted Japanese scores take the musical language a considerable step further than Debussy's. Engaging performances all, set in the ambience of Caird Hall, Dundee, with lively channel information.
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