Whereas most musicians seem to emphasize the music's reflective, nostalgic elements, Schneeberger and Cholette are more attuned to the abstract qualities in the music. On balance, I find that I still prefer the traditional approach, exemplified by Shannon and Fulkerson. To my ears, these artists manage to capture something wonderfully magical and mysterious that just eludes Schneeberger and Cholette. However, I should note that some critics have given high praise to this ECM disc. For example, it was awarded five stars in a BBC Music Magazine review. Another bonus: The ECM recording squeezes all four sonatas on a single disc.
In this second volume, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and its chief conductor Sir Andrew Davis play some of the most characteristic pieces of Charles Ives, an insurance salesman by trade and one of the most precociously original of all American composers.
Charles Ives composed his first two symphonies between 1897 and 1902, but they weren't performed until a half-century later, when Leonard Bernstein premiered the Symphony No. 2 in 1951, and Richard Bales conducted the Symphony No. 1 in 1953. The contrasts between the two symphonies are striking, since the First was a student work, composed in emulation of the European tradition, while the Second was more idiosyncratic in the use of hymn tunes, folk songs, and other Americana, all developed in a freewheeling manner that reflected Ives' eclectic musical upbringing. This 2015 hybrid SACD by Andrew Davis and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is a straightforward presentation of both works, side-by-side, and their differences are highlighted in the styles of playing.
Ives tried repeatedly to find a violinist with whom he could play his sonatas, but all such attempts ended in a fiasco. Ives remarked sarcastically about a rehearsal of the Violin Sonata #1 with a German violinist: "The 'Professor' came in and, after a lot of big talk, started to play the first movement of the First Sonata. He didn't even get through the first page. He was all bothered with the rhythms and the notes, and got mad. He said 'This cannot be played. It is awful. It is not music, it makes no sense.' He couldn't get it even after I'd played it over for him several times. I remember he came out of the little back music room with his hands over his ears, and said, 'When you get awfully indigestible food in your stomach that distresses you, you can get rid of it, but I cannot get those horrible sounds out of my ears.'"from ECM booklet
It seems that Ives derived a lot of pleasure from composing the four violin sonatas written during his mature period of creativity. In general, he wrote most of the "prose" for the piano and most of the "poetry" for the violin. This was one way of resolving the problems that existed in the interaction between the piano and violin. He composed in a lyrical manner, making full use of the violin's natural properties. It seems he developed an entire concept for the uniting of the two instruments. All sections of all of his sonatas, except those in the third, only give tempo indication.from BVHaast booklet
Diknu Schneeberger is just 14 years old when his father encouraged him to make music himself and gives him a guitar. The teenager begins to discover the instrument and he takes lessons. A year later, he is so good that the father brings him to join his band as a rhythm guitarist. Another year it has immensely developed his talent so that he will lead guitarist of the band and a year later formed his own trio . In the same year, the young musician gives concerts throughout the country and preserving the Hans Koller Prize of the most important music award in the country as "Talent of the Year ".
While often accused of composing “Bach with too many notes”, the music of Reger had tremendous influence on the music of his successors. The two late Violin Sonatas featured here are among the finest examples of late Romantic chamber music – tightly constructed, compelling and remarkably concise.
To commemorate the great composer's birthday, today 200 years ago.