John Adams: Gnarly Buttons / John's Book of Alleged Dances (Nonesuch Audio CD)


Catalogue No: 7559794652
Shop Product Code: 257188T

Status: Usually despatched within 10 - 12 working days

Department: CDs - Save up to 15% - Classical CDs

Publisher: Nonesuch

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Michael Collins (clarinet)
Kronos Quartet
London Sinfonietta
John Adams, conductor
released: April 21 1998

“John's Book of Alleged Dances (the equivocation in the title refers to dance steps that have yet to be invented) is prime-cut Adams – fidgety, tuneful, teeming with invention and all but tactile in its aural variety; its use of the prepared piano is fascinating. We start by following a streetcar from town to coast and back again, then visit 'Toot Nipple' with 'chainsaw triads on the cello'.

There's a raw-edged 'Hoe-Down' for leader David Harrington, a 'Pavane' for cellist Joan Jeanrenaud and a doleful Habanera. 'Hammer & Chisel' are contractor friends who construct to a knotty toccata; a slithery 'Alligator Escalator' employs reptilian harmonics and a chirpy 'Serenade' pays subtle homage to Beethoven and Schubert. These and more are kept on a high flame by the Kronos Quartet, whereas Gnarly Buttons calls on the combined talents of Michael Collins and the London Sinfonietta. A more intense piece by far, its dry but colourful demeanour occasionally recalls Schoenberg's similarly spice-flavoured Serenade. The first movement is based on a Protestant shape-note hymn; the second is a 'Mad-Cow' hoe-down; and the third is a warming song of sure-fire hit potential. Collins does Adams proud, and so does the London Sinfonietta.
The recordings are first-rate.”

Gramophone Classical Music Guide


Contents and Reviews

John's Book of Alleged Dances:
Judah to Ocean
Toot Nipple
Pavane: Shoe's So Fine
Rag the Bone
Stubble Crochet
Hammer & Chisel
Alligator Escalator
Ständchen: The Little Serenade
Judah to Ocean (reprise)

Gnarly Buttons:
The Perilous Shore
Hoe-down (Mad Cow)
Put Your Loving Arms Around Me