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Hastening Westwards Original recording reissued

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Product details

1. Pier And Ocean: I
2. Pier And Ocean: II
3. Pier And Ocean: III
4. Hastening Westward: I
5. Hastening Westward: II
6. Hastening Westward: III
7. Hastening Westward: IV
8. Hastening Westward: V
9. Hastening Westward: VI
10. Hastening Westward: VII

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Astounding Percussion/Trumpet Duo 23 April 2005
By Michael Bettine - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I've been a longtime fan of American percussionist/Berlin resident Robyn Schulkowsky. I've had this recording since it first was released in 1995 and this is perhaps her best effort. Originally conceived as a solo recording, ECM producer Manfred Eicher brought in Norwegian trumpeter Nils Petter Molvær at the last minute as a foil for her percussive musings. The pairing was an inspired choice, as Molvær adds a haunting melodicism to the proceedings.

Schulkowsky is a master percussionist and composer. Using a minimal set up of a few drums, bells, and a large gong, she travels a percussion odyssey from dark, dirge-like pulses to haunting metallic reverberations. 'Pier And Ocean III' shows off Schulkowsky's rhythmic variety, as she balances both low drum, and high bell sounds, creating a hypnotic whirl of percussion. 'Hastening Westward I' reveals a gentle side, as she bows small, tuned cymbals (crotales), as Molvær plays a series of slow, mournful notes that hang in the air. 'Hastening Westward II' finds Schulkowsky exploring muffled drum sounds with a simple ostinato pattern and counter rhythms. The effect is very hypnotic and trancelike. 'Hastening Westward II' has Molvær playing an almost anthemic trumpet line, punctuated by Schulkowsky's drumming underneath, while 'IV' makes use of the reverberations of a large gong, played with sticks by Schulkowsky, and played 'into,' as sort of a reverb chamber by Molvær's trumpet.

This is intensely beautiful music, full of surprises that take the listener to unexpected places. Highly recommended for the adventurous, and lovers of contemporary classical/improv percussion. Robyn Schulkowsky is a master musician who deserves wider recognition.

© 2005 Michael Bettine
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