Thomas Ades, London Symphony Orchestra - Ades: Asyla, Tevot, Polaris (2017) [Official Digital Download DSD64]

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Thomas Ades, London Symphony Orchestra - Ades: Asyla, Tevot, Polaris (2017) [Official Digital Download DSD64]

Thomas Adès, London Symphony Orchestra - Adès: Asyla / Tevot / Polaris (2017)
DSD64 (.dsf) 1 bit/2,8 MHz | Time - 62:55 minutes | 1,43 GB
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Artwork: Digital booklet

An acclaimed conductor and pianist as well as a composer, Thomas Adès has become one of the most imposing figures in contemporary music. On this live 2016 recording he leads the London Symphony Orchestra on his seminal trilogy, pieces that not only occupy a special place in his output, but in the modern classical repertoire as a whole. Composed in 1997, Asyla heralded Adès as a major voice. The title is the plural form of the word asylum and plays on the dual meaning of both madhouse and sanctuary. Typical of his symphonic works, it calls for a large orchestra, including six percussionists and a variety of treated pianos, to achieve an array of colours, textures and timbres. Tevot is a one movement symphony that builds upon the ideas of Asyla and pushes the players to the limits of their technical ability, with long passages written in stratospheric registers. Inspired by the North Star, Polaris conjures up a definite sense of vastness, with musicians placed offstage to enhance the sense of space. The album concludes with the Adès miniature Brahms, sung here by baritone Samuel Dale Johnson.

Thomas Ades, London Symphony Orchestra - Ades: Asyla, Tevot, Polaris (2017) [Official Digital Download DSD64]

Atonal but with broadly appealing programmatic content and an awareness of the world beyond the classical concert hall, the three large orchestral works presented here have been designated by composer Thomas Adès as a kind of trilogy. Indeed they seem to flow from one into the other, with Asyla and Tevot (Hebrew for "musical bars" or "words") united by their use of stable places or threads amid chaos (the "asyla" of the opening work are in the sense of refuges, not places for the insane), and the broader musical spaces of Tevot leading to the celestial visions of Polaris. The works, with dense and often clashing orchestral elements cohering into clear structures, are recognizably by the same composer, but they show an evolution; the brash Asyla is a quintessentially youthful work. All three share a preoccupation with orchestral sonority, pursued with writing that lies at the limits of players' capabilities, and a good performance of Adès' work should convey the presence of those limits. These readings by the London Symphony Orchestra, with Adès himself at the helm, certainly fill the bill, and the accompanying Blu-Ray disc gives an idea of the efforts involved in these live concerts (one each for Asyla and for the other three works; no splicing involved). The sound on the music CD is also top-notch. You could sample the "Ecstasio" movement of Asyla (track 3) for an idea of what Adès is about, or you could turn to the rarity included as a bonus: an orchestral text to a poem by pianist Alfred Brendel, about Brahms. Highly recommended with the LSO sounding highly energized.

Even as the UK is brimming with wonderful young composers, I think few would dispute that Tom Adès may be the most extravagantly gifted of them all …" – Sir Simon Rattle

Tracklist:

01 - Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): I. —
02 - Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): II. —
03 - Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): III. Ecstasio
04 - Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): IV. Quasi leggiero
05 - Tevot, Op. 24 (2005–2006)
06 - Polaris [Voyage for Orchestra], Op. 29 (2010)
07 - Brahms, Op. 21 (2001)

Recorded live in DSD at the Barbican Hall, on March 9 & 16, 2016
Produced by James Mallinson. Engineering, Editing, Mixing & Mastering by Classic Sound Ltd.

Musicians:
London Symphony Orchestra
Thomas Adès - conductor

Analyzed: London Symphony Orchestra, Thomas Adès / Adès: Asyla, Tevot & Polaris
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DR Peak RMS Duration Track
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DR18 -10.75 dB -38.34 dB 5:50 01-Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): I. —
DR22 -11.98 dB -41.89 dB 6:34 02-Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): II. —
DR16 -7.95 dB -32.65 dB 6:35 03-Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): III. Ecstasio
DR20 -9.75 dB -40.29 dB 5:02 04-Asyla, Op. 17 (1997): IV. Quasi leggiero
DR19 -6.94 dB -34.05 dB 20:19 05-Tevot, Op. 24 (2005–6)
DR18 -10.85 dB -36.03 dB 13:30 06-Polaris [Voyage for Orchestra], Op. 29 (2010)
DR19 -12.85 dB -39.48 dB 5:05 07-Brahms, Op. 21 (2001)
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 7
Official DR value: DR19

Samplerate: 2822400 Hz / PCM Samplerate: 88200 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 1
Bitrate: 5645 kbps
Codec: DSD64
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