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Archive for November, 2014

10/10 …….. and 10/10


This review is from ClassicsToday.com. The reviewer is Jed Distler, his title, “Eric Craven’s Open-Ended (and quite beautiful) Piano Sonatas”. ClassicsToday.com appears to be quite unique amongst its peers as it updates its news and reviews each day. It has also developed a rating system which assesses both performance and sound quality of the CDs that are reviewed. There are quite specific criteria. 10/10 is considered to be …”superior, qualities of unusual merit…. If the performance under review is truly exceptional and is supported by sound that neither artificially enhances, detracts from, nor draws attention away from the music, the critic may award 10/10″.

Mr. Distler is generous with his comments ….”what we hear on these two discs is  fluid, cogent, pianistically idiomatic, alternately energetic and lyrical, and just plain beautiful”. I am appreciative of reviewers such as he who avoid quotidian levels of prose on the one hand and the oracular and sententious on the other.

Sonata No 8, being so radically different and novel, generates difficulties for a critic to construct any review or analysis that carries with it real understanding or insight without him/her (always a him….) having  recourse to the score. Scott McLaughlin’s “necessary” sleeve notes constitute the sole source of written information regarding the compositional and performance processes. I am always fascinated by the labels and references the reviewers attach to this  music.This reviewer hears Messiaen, Boulez and Feldman. Thankfully there is space left for some Craven.

Mary, Alex, Scott, Peter and Stephen will be quite delighted when I inform them of this review especially when they see that our C.D. is so highly regarded as to be included in “a select group of the month’s best recordings”. To read this review:http://www.classicstoday.com/review/eric-cravens-open-ended-quite-beautiful-piano-sonatas/

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