What a good place to start if you're wishing to aquaint yourself with one of the greatest musician alive today. this cd includes four very meaty works that fill almost the full 80 minutes possible on a cd.
The cd showcases works mostly from the 1990's. All show his skill for writing music in many layers that move seamlessly forward and change tempo with similarly seamless ease. The effect is for a very rich palette, opulently scored and warmly recorded. The music combines tonal and non tonal elements - all of which feel right and ineviable. What little overt dissonance there is only highlights the passion an dthe intended formal tensions in th pieces. For those more familiar with his earliest work, like Kraft for example, this music is remarkable euphonious.
Three of the four pieces could be seen as small (in time scale) symphonies with the longest work being an extended one movement cello concerto. The concerto and Fresco are perhaps the darkest and most overtly expressive works though I find Parada a particularly attractive an opulent piece. Lindberg mentioned that he had the processes in the Sibelius 5th Symphony in mind and it is a worthy follow up to Sibelius with a language that makes each transition seem totally natural and inevitable. Indeed Lindberg uses a chaconne like chord progession as a bass in many of his works to build the sense of inevitable progress. this is certianly true in these works.
Cantigas has a minor concertante part for oboe but, like Parada, what stands out is the mighty battery of horns that put this music in a sound world between Wagner and the Rite of Spring.
All the works show Lindberg's great love of orchestral writing and formal assurance.
If you simply wanted to compare his work to Sibelius's bleaker nature utterances, because he's a Finn, then the nearest I can get is to say that Lindberg's work amounts to a rich winter feast washed down by the richest vintage red wine. No wonder I suffer from gout.
Highly recommended. Buy it then hunt down his other great orchestral masterpieces. I can recommend Kraft, Aura, Violin Concerto, Concerto for Orchestra, Sculpture and his now popular Clarinet. Concerto