Charles Louis Eugène Koechlin (27 November 1867 – 31 December 1950) was a French composer, teacher and writer on music. He was a political radical all his life and a passionate enthusiast for such diverse things as medieval music, …
"..For those who know and love the orchestral songs of Debussy, Ravel, and Chausson, these songs by Koechlin will provide hours of pleasure. " 4,5/5~AMG
This recording is the World Premiere of Charles Koechlin's Jungle Book and received the Orchestral Gramophone Award and was, memorably, accepted by the son of the composer. Charles Koechlin loved Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book and set different parts of the book to music at various points in his career. The first of these - The Three Poems - bear the titles: Seal Lullaby, Night Song in the Jungle and Song of Kala Nag, with texts from The Jungle Book. The music, scored during 1904 - 04, is exotic and evocative. The lullaby mimics the gently lapping of waves as the soprano and chorus spin a soothing tapestry of sound. The Night-Song in the Jungle had a cadence that suggests movement (sung by the soprano, tenor, baritone and chorus) and is a song of well-wishing to the animals of the night. The Song of Kala Nag is a lament of an elephant that has been tamed for his old life in the jungle, sung by the tenor. The poem describes a night in the year when all of the elephants gather to dance together and, rather than being somber, the music is triumphant as the elephant recounts his past freedom and vows to have it again.
Admirers of the string quartets of Gabriel Fauré, Claude Debussy, and Maurice Ravel will be happy to discover the refined string quartets of Charles Koechlin, a contemporary of those composers who wrote in a rather similar vein. These attractive chamber works, like the rest of Koechlin's oeuvre, are quite obscure and had been unduly neglected until the Ardeo Quartet chose to record them for its debut CD on Ar Re-Se. The String Quartet No. 1 in D major, Op. 51, is dated 1911-1913, though it appears to have gestated since 1902, and the String Quartet No. 2, Op. 57, was mostly composed between 1911 and 1916, though its sketches show some material going back to 1909; both works therefore partake of musical styles developed between fin de siècle Impressionism and the later …….Blair Sanderson @ Allmusic.com
(…) Les Chants de Nectaire is a perfect example of Koechlin's love of monody and of his comprehensive understanding of the possibilities of the flute. The range of the pieces is deceptively wide - from quiet, almost becalmed meditations to furious, abandoned dances in which the metre is ever changing and sometimes non-existent, while the melodies move from modality and diatonic purity to complex chromaticism, to create a flickering patchwork of moods. The technical demands on the player are enormous (not surprisingly this is the first ever recording of the complete cycle) but Pierre-Yves Artaud is one of the world's greatest flautists, and lavishes all his artistry on these haunting miniatures. - Andrew Clements, The Guardian