- Tirol Concerto for Piano & Orchestra
- Passages, for instrumental ensemble (collaboration with Ravi Shankar)
This disc of Philip Glass' "Tirol Concerto for piano and orchestra" is among the first wave of releases from Orange Mountain Music, a label started by Kurt Munkacsi and Don Christensen out of their attempt to archive the master tapes of Glass' music. Most of the releases slated to appear are of older recordings, including many that have not been heard before. But the "Tirol Concerto for piano and orchestra" dates only from 2000 and was recorded in 2002. The liner notes state that this concerto incorporates elements of Alpine folk music and therefore represents the first instance in which Glass has ever derived musical ideas from folk sources. The "Tirol Concerto" nonetheless is so dependent upon Glass' usual scalar movement and arpeggiations that this "new wrinkle" doesn't seem to make much stylistic difference. The piece is played with flair and restraint by Dennis Russell Davies and the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra. This concerto is captured in a very beautiful recording, and is one of the most relaxed and reflective sounding pieces produced by Glass in a long time. In the second work, Dennis Russell Davies returns as co-creator in a three-movement arrangement of part of Glass' "Passages," in itself a collaborative work made with Ravi Shankar. Davies arranges the three pieces for saxophone quartet, strings, piano, and percussion. Here the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra meets the renowned Rascher Saxophone Quartet, but the feeling is not so much "east meets west" as it is one of unity with a concertante element. "Passages" sounds more like a folk-inflected work than does the "Tirol Concerto." This is a highly enjoyable disc that fanciers of Philip Glass will greatly enjoy, and a promising jumping off point for Orange Mountain Music.