Brahms on Brass

Brahms on Brass

by Canadian Brass
     
 

The title of Canadian Brass' album Brahms on Brass might strike fear in the hearts of purists, but it needn't. The keyboard works selected are stylistically appropriate for arrangement for brass ensemble, and actually fit smoothly into the standard types of music for brass ensemble. The late 19th and early 20th centuries sawSee more details below

Overview

The title of Canadian Brass' album Brahms on Brass might strike fear in the hearts of purists, but it needn't. The keyboard works selected are stylistically appropriate for arrangement for brass ensemble, and actually fit smoothly into the standard types of music for brass ensemble. The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw numerous popular dances for brass or wind ensemble, and the "16 Waltzes, Op. 39," are not stylistically that far removed from what one might have heard a brass band playing at the turn of the 20th century. What does set these pieces apart (far apart!) from the run-of-the-mill brass music of the time is their quality. The waltzes are beautifully crafted, elegant, witty, and for all their apparent simplicity and immediate appeal, musically sophisticated. No. 6, for instance, is so rhythmically clever that it seems to be in shifting complex meters instead of triple time, but it is indeed a 3/4 waltz. The album's other major offering, "11 Chorale Preludes for organ, Op. 122," also fits into a longstanding tradition for brass ensembles, the religious chorale. The rich, intricate polyphonic writing of the chorale preludes makes them natural candidates for arrangement for ensembles where their individual lines can be heard with great clarity. The lyrical "Es ist ein Ros' entsprungen," and the second, valedictory setting of "O Welt ich muss dich lassen," are especially lovely. Much credit goes to the arrangers (Brandon Ridenour and Chris Coletti for the waltzes and Ralph Sauer for the chorales) for their skillful, inventive, and idiomatic transformation of the keyboard pieces into convincing music for brass ensemble, remaining true to the originals while presenting them with fresh new sonorities. Canadian Brass lives up to its deserved reputation as one of the world's finest brass ensembles. Technically and musically the performances are superb, although issue could be taken with the tempos of many of the chorale preludes, which are played much faster than is traditional. The sound is clean and clear, but a little on the loud side.

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Product Details

Release Date:
09/13/2011
Label:
Opening Day Ent
UPC:
0776143741529
catalogNumber:
7415
Rank:
226691

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Chorale Preludes (11) for organ, Op. 122  - Johannes Brahms  -  Canadian Brass  - Ralph Sauer  - Dixon Van Winkle
  2. Ballade for piano in D minor ("Edward"), Op. 10/1  - Johannes Brahms  -  Canadian Brass  - Russ Hartenberger  - Dixon Van Winkle  - Mike Fedyshyn  - Brandon Ridenour  - Austin Hitchcock  - David Pell
  3. Waltzes (16) for piano, 4 hands (or piano), Op. 39  - Johannes Brahms  -  Canadian Brass  - Dixon Van Winkle  - Brandon Ridenour  - Chris Coletti

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