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Great CD Choice review

April 20, 2022

Barry Forshaw

LUX AETERNA – CHORAL WORKS BY GYÖRGY LIGETI & ZOLTÁN KODÁLY, Danish National Vocal Ensemble directed by Marcus Creed?OUR Recordings SACD The composer György Ligeti was – to say the least – bemused by the new celebrity he enjoyed after the use of his music in Stanley Kubrick’s classic science fiction epic 2001: A Space Odyssey (alongside such composers as Richard and Johann Strauss). Of course, the hauntingly atmospheric, atonal choral music of György Ligeti was perfect for capturing the fathomless reaches of space, and Lux Aeterna — one of the pieces chosen by Kubrick (who summarily dumped Alex North’s commissioned score to use existing music he’d previously tracked the film with) here receives its first rendering in SACD sound, and it is done with total craftsmanship. Needless to say, an album of a cappella choral music should not be listened to in its entirety, but heard in this discrete fragments, it’s hard to imagine better performances than they receive here. For most of the 20th century, the two giants of Hungarian music were Bartók and Kodály. Following his explosion on the international scene in the mid-60s, György Ligeti, a student of Kodály, was added to that list. Audiophiles will note the sonic presence thanks to producer Michael Emery and technician Mikkel Nymand. A Dolby Atmos release is planned. Posted on April 21, 2022 by Barry Forshaw

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