Thomas Kessler: , said the shotgun to the head / Utopia II


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Artikelnummer: NEOS 11511 Kategorie:
Veröffentlicht am: Oktober 24, 2015


[01] , said the shotgun to the head. for poetry speaker, Rap choir, string quartet and orchestra (2003) 26:53


Saul Williams, poetry speaker

Rap choir: Elena Berthold, Hennig Gemke, The-Huy Giang, Julia Lang, Stella Lehmann, Talin Maas, Itamar Marom (Schiller-Gymnasium Köln), Oliver Karau, Sinat Ud-Din, Patrick Elberg (Berlin), Hannah Maria Noack (Hamm)
Coaching & rehearsals : Lisa Baum

WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln
Jonathan Stockhammer, conductor


[02] Utopia II for 5 voices, 41 instruments and live electronics (2011) 31:22
Work commissioned by WDR

Voices : So Jeong Ahn, Isis Krüger, Axel Lindner, Johanna Melder, Barbara Ziersch

Music informatics : Thomas Seelig
Audio design : Markus Danne
Audio design assistants : Simon Böckenhoff, Ferdinand Grätz, Tobias Hartmann, Sergej Maingardt, Hendrik Manook, Tim Schmidt, Oliver Niemöller

WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln
Jonathan Stockhammer, conductor


total playing time: 58:16



„Time was when Thomas Kessler (b1937) composed impeccably avant-garde works, which makes such a Piece as said the shotgun to the head (2003) the more arresting. Saul Williams is notably erudite among ’slam‘ poets – his sprawling text akin to Allen Ginsberg in existential fervour yet eschewing the latter’s tendency to self-pity. Set in the context of a rap choir and orchestra dominated by strings and percussion, the Music yields a sublety that complements the panache of ist main performer. If Utopia II (2011) is rather less provocative, the combining of voices and instruments with live electronic results in a sonic mesh that intriguingly sets in relief ist ‚utopian‘ texts. In both works, Jonathan Stockhammer directs the Cologne Radio Symphony with unfailing assurance – making this disc an unexpected highlight“.

Richard Whitehouse





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