The Scandinavian countries, with well-funded symphony orchestras, have been producing a new generation of composers who write for them. The best of these, a group that undoubtedly includes Anders Hillborg, have begun to attract attention and commissions from outside the region. Three of this group of four works from between 2010 and 2014 (Hillborg has been at it for decades) had commissioners from outside Sweden, and the mighty centerpiece, Sirens, was commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic (whose former music director, Esa-Pekka Salonen, conducts it) and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
The ensemble London Winds, praised by BBC Music for its 'technical accomplishment, expressive commitment and warmth of timbre', presents in this recording great twentieth-century works for winds. It features music by Hindemith, Nielsen, and Janáček, and, from the next generation, Barber and Ligeti. Although not equally prolific (Kleine Kammermusik is Hindemith's single contribution to that genre while winds are generally more prominence in Nielsen's music), all these composers brought the wind repertoire back to prominence, after a quiet period of more than a century. The music is full of playfulness and European folk colours.