MARTIN KUTNOWSKI (b.1968): 6 selections from Watercolours for Ten Fingers, Peter Emberley’s Dream, 5 Argentinian Folk Pieces, ANTHONY GENGE (b.1952): String Quartet No. 2, TALIVALDIS KENINS (1919-2008): Little Suite, MICHAEL R. MILLER (b.1932): Fantasia on Themes of Beethoven, ELDON RATHBURN (1916-2008): Subway Thoughts, RICHARD KIDD (b.1954): Pastorale.
Catalogue Number: 05S070
Label: Leaf Music
Description: All the pieces in this attractively diverse program are thoroughly approachable, sharing a genial, appealing tonal vocabulary. Genge's quartet is very tonal indeed, with all three movements based on the idea of fast post-minimalist accompaniments underpinning long sustained melodies. Rathburn (a longtime Records International customer!) provides a little sketch of a railway journey; tense anticipation, the rhythmic rattle of the train, relaxation after departure. Kutnowski's two sets of miniatures are little character pieces in Romantic style, the first transcribed from piano teaching pieces rich in imagery; the second based on folk idioms (cleverly recast for the quartet) from the composer's native Argentina (which also put in an appearance in several of the Watercolors). Peter Emberley's Dream is a nostalgic little pastoral based on a New Brunswick folk song. Kenins' tiny three-movement suite is neoclassically economical, with a French flavor to its harmonic language. Miller uses well known themes of Beethoven - one in particular - in various degrees of disguise in a brief set of free variations. Kidd's Pastorale is a gentle, reflective piece that sounds like a transcribed folksong. Saint John String Quartet.