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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    



VISIBLE BASS LINE
A MAN, A WOMAN AND A DOUBLE BASS

Carmen - the opera - Georges Bizet
Busy Line - Murray Semos / Frank Stanton
Puttin' On The Ritz - Irving Berlin
Stop To Think! - Tango Song - Geoff Lindsey / Julian Jacobson
Sonata in F - Jean Barrière
Hymn II - Alfred Schnittke
Angelus - Diana Burrell
Theme and Variations - Ignace Joseph Pleyel
My Baby Just Cares For Me - Donaldson / Kahn
These Boots Are Made For Walking - Lee Hazlewood
Orpheus In The Underworld, and other operas - Jacques Offenbach
Lowri Blake, cello and voice
Peter Buckoke, double bass
Rec: East Woodhay Church Hants Dec 2000
LOWRI RECORDS LOWRI 2004
[67.59]

Entitled VISIBLE BASS LINE , this is a welcome addition to Lowri Blake's own-label discography. The double act has Peter Buckoke, the excellent bass player of the equally excellent Schubert Ensemble of London, supporting Lowri Blake, virtuoso cellist who also sings as she plays. They are regularly to be heard in London and elsewhere. Lowri additionally strikes the 18 bells in the most challenging piece here, Angelus by Diana Burrell (1986), 'mysterious and nocturnal, yet alert' their liner notes tell us.

Classics and favourite jazzy songs are purposely juxtaposed to strike sparks off each other and undermine category separations. Barriere is a specialty of Lowri's and his sonatas repay attention. Pleyel's variations challenge both instruments (it is the bass which has the high harmonics in No.6) and Offenbach and Bizet are both subjected to irreverent compression in Orpheus and Carmen (pace Mr Dyer http://musicweb.vavo.com/classrev/2001/Oct01/Dyertribes_Carmen.htm, but in my book neither is sacrosanct nor subject to a protection order).

I'm not clear what we are meant to do with the spare second at the end, but in Faster - the acceleration of just about everything (Abacus), an obligatory read for the new millennium - we learn from James Gleick that seconds are no longer precise enough and we have to think in nano-seconds.

Recommended, and visit Lowri Blake's website www.lowrirecords.com where, to get the idea, you can sample clips from Schnittke and My Baby Just Cares For Me!
Peter Grahame Woolf




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