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Ligeti : Project Vol.1 - Melodien, Chamber Concerto, Piano Concerto & Mysteries Of The Macabre

György Ligeti Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: £5.37 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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Product details

  • Audio CD (23 April 2001)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: CLASSICAL
  • ASIN: B000059QW8
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 176,771 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Song TitleArtist Time Price
Listen  1. MelodienLigeti Project13:02£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Chamber Concerto : I CorrenteLigeti Project 5:48£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Chamber Concerto : II Calmo, sostenutoLigeti Project 6:18£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Chamber Concerto : III Movimento preciso e meccanicoLigeti Project 3:35£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Chamber Concerto : IV PrestoLigeti Project 3:32£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Piano Concerto : I Vivace molto ritmico e precisoLigeti Project 4:05£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Piano Concerto : II Lento e desertoLigeti Project 6:44£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Piano Concerto : III Vivace cantabileLigeti Project 4:12£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Piano Concerto : IV Allegro risoluto, molto ritmicoLigeti Project 4:50£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Piano Concerto : V Presto luminosoLigeti Project 3:34£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Mysteries of the MacabreLigeti Project 7:57£0.79  Buy MP3 

Product Description

Reinbert de Leeuw conducts four works by the Hungarian composer György Ligeti on this disc. The opener, Melodien, bubbles magically into earshot like the start of a dream. Wispy abstract figures float through the score with visionary logic. Two unisons at either end support the thin fabric like tent-poles. The four-movement Chamber Concerto for 13 instruments emerges from the mist. Sul ponticello strings flash like loose metal in a tin tank. The Movimento preciso e meccanico chugs amusingly like a rusty conveyor belt. The instruments, muted and staccato, play pulsing games with the stereo speakers. The Piano Concerto is real madhouse music. Pierre-Laurent Aimard holds no prominent piano part but is rather the integrated spokesman of a cackling, surrounding orchestra. Melodic motifs dominate the background like repeated heckles, and what sound like welt-inducing lash strokes stimulate the Allegro risoluto. The self-assured ramblings in the Presto luminoso challenge the listener to extract sense from it. Finally, Mysteries of the Macabre for Peter Masseurs' clean, solo trumpet and orchestra is a wacky excursion into the world of Ligeti's 30-year-old opera Le Grand Macabre. Humour is the appropriate device to dispel the seriousness of contemporary ideas. The ear is not even supposed to take this calculated chaos at face value. It is a step towards enlightenment. --Rick Jones

Product Description

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ligeti at his best 17 Aug 2001
Format:Audio CD
Ligeti's brilliant ear for wit is brought out superbly in this collection of pieces for chamber ensemble. The manic Piano Concerto grabs the listener's ear with its irregular rhythms, comic combinations of intruments (e.g. double-bass, piccolo and slide-whistle) and sheer virtuosity of ensemble playing (Pierre-Laurent Aimard is the stupefyingly good soloist). The Chamber Concerto makes for compelling listening, too, not only for its virtuosity, but also for its extraordinary sonorities gained from close-clustered harmony and variety of playing techniques. 'Melodien' creates that unforgettably Ligetian sound-world that appeared in 'Atmospheres' in a slightly different form a few years earlier. The programme ends with an arrangement of arias (now for trumpet) from the composer's absurdist opera 'Le Grand Macabre'; the listener is confronted with yet more strange and exciting sounds, and the track concludes to the tune of yelps and screams emanating both from the trumpet and the mouths of the excellent Asko Ensemble... This CD is one of my firm favourites.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful and Inspirational 15 Sep 2002
Format:Audio CD
I start this review with considerable disadvantage as I have no musical education whatsoever. I have been an afficionado of Ligeti's music since visiting the movie theatre in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1968, as a teenager, and experiencing 2001: A Space Odyssey on an enormous screen. The following day I bought the soundtrack and ever since I have loved his music.
You sort of know that you are in trouble when you read the composer's notes which accompany the CD and you feel that you know less than you did before you started reading.
This does not detract from the music however. Of all of the modern day composers, Ligeti above all has the ability to create ethereal structures out of sound with regular instruments. His compositions are haunting and assume a life of their own.
In this collection, a welcome addition to the current library of recorded works available to the public, the four pieces which the composer has selected originated at various times in his career from the early 1970s through to the mid 1980s. While I would not attempt to classify Ligeti as a member of the minimalist school as his work often defies categorisation, he certainly has been influenced by it and in some ways there are some similarities with Terry Riley's early compositions. Ligeti though, unlike many others is open about his influences and his concern with rhythm he notes is assisted with his listening to world music.
Whatever his influences Ligeti creates soundscapes as no other. His work is always a cerebral delight and allows the imagination to flow freely. Listening to this album, and others by this modest genius, one is reminded of science fiction movies where the film makers are able to profuce special effects of lights and ethereal images. Ligeti's music inspires such visions and the listener can experience an almost trancendental experience. This is music for the mind and for the soul because so often it is akin to a spiritual experience.
Wonderful and inspirational.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Recording of Chamber & Piano Concerto 21 Dec 2007
By Scriabinmahler TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This cd is well worth getting for the chilling and imaginative performance of Chamber Concerto, one of Ligeti's most powerfully evocative works played far better than any other ensemble.

Piano concerto is played brilliantly by Aimard, better than his DG recording. Musical language of the work is very similar to Ligeti's Etudes, very complex and exciting if not so compelling as Chamber Concerto.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why have I not heard this before? 30 Oct 2010
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I was looking at the reviews of the live Henry Cow box sets and saw Ligeti quoted as an inspiration, along with people I admire greatly like Webern so I thought I should try it. Boy am I glad I did! For anyone with an interest in progressive music ( be that from a rock, jazz and classical perspective, as to me they are all so similar) from the later part of the 20th century onwards this is essential. It is far from inaccessible, there are melodies, elements of real beauty, and not a dull moment. It. Is complex and beguiling. I shall be buying more.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.9 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast becoming a favorite. 9 July 2001
By Ed Brickell - Published on
Format:Audio CD
This is great, crazy stuff -- the piano concerto is, as pianist Aimard writes in his enthusiastic booklet notes, "a masterpiece." Endlessly inventive, with multiple layers of rhythmic and harmonic complexity, yet all presented with crystal clear clarity ... the best of what modern music can be. The real pleasure of this disk is that you never really know what you're going to hear from one moment to the next. Continual surprise is the order of the day, and Ligeti is a master of playful suspense, a puckish magician who enjoys playing with your expectations and preconceived notions.
Some would argue this is fairly lightweight when put alongside the formidable likes of Carter or Boulez. I don't think that is the case at all. Ligeti communicates more readily than those two composers, but is no less rewarding upon repeated listens. This is not mere sonic novelty, but an experience that will leave you refreshed and enriched.
I'm looking forward to the other four volumes in what should prove to be a very laudable series. Also check out Volumes 3 and 7 of the Ligeti edition on Sony, featuring his piano etudes (the best since Debussy) and some provocative works for wind ensemble.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Ligeti 31 Mar 2003
By peter-from-la - Published on
Format:Audio CD
The wild and exotic Piano Concerto is performed here by one of Ligeti's favorite pianists, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, a marvel of pianistic talent. (Ligeti has written many of his Piano Etudes with Aimard's talented fingers in mind.) Aimard had previously recorded it under Pierre Boulez on DG, but his performance here is nimbler, and the accompaniment better integrated with the piano.
The Chamber Concerto is one of Ligeti's most popular pieces: it has been recorded several times. The pizzicato-heavy third movement in particular is one of his standout creations, a musical mechanism with both soul and menace; the poetic and heart stopping perpetuum mobile that closes the piece is breathtaking, a brief glimpse into another world. Melodien was recorded only once before this. It revisits territory covered by the Chamber Concerto, but uses a larger ensemble of musicians. It's a Catherine Wheel of melodies, as if dreamt by a gifted, and unusually musical, watchmaker.
My favorite recordings on CD of both Melodien and the Chamber Concerto remain those led by David Atherton, conducting the London Sinfonietta (recorded in the mid-1970s, shortly after the pieces were written). Most recently that CD was available at mid-price on London/Decca, but it is unfortunately out of print. If you come across it in a used record bin consider snapping it up. In the meantime, you have this wonderful program to enjoy for repeated listenings: It is utterly fascinating, web-like music, here comic, there poignant, and always chockfull of surprise.
Ligeti has written more accessible works (String Quartet #1, Horn Trio, Piano Etudes Book 1, Six Bagatelles), but these are delightful pieces that should not be overlooked by people interested in exploring the music of this 20th century master. This is one of the best Ligeti records around.
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Playful and Inventive 17 Aug 2002
By Christopher Forbes - Published on
Format:Audio CD
Thank God for Teldec. Releasing this music is really important. Ligeti is certainly on of the most important living composers and this series will help make all of his works available in composer authorized performances before we loose him.
I love this CD, as I have most of the Teldec and Sony discs. This music is Ligeti at his most inventive and playful. Melodien is another of his one movement pieces for orchestra (actually chamber orchestra) but it marks a shift in style from the cloud pieces of the 60s to pieces of greater melodic weight and density. In this work and in the Chamber Concerto that follows, Ligeti is more motivic, though he treats his motives more often as elements in a sound scape rather than in traditional Beethovenian development. The textures and harmonies are quite beautiful. The inclusion of Harpsichord in the Chamber Concerto is a master stroke.
The Piano Concerto is quite simply the best piano concerto of the last 20 years. Unlike his Cello Concerto or the Double Concerto, where the soloist is subsumed in the orchestral texture, here Ligeti embraces the traditional rheatoric of the piano concerto, but twists is around. There are moments reminiciant of Bartok, and moments that have some similarity to minimalist procedures, but the work is never anything less than Ligeti's own, dominated by twisted chormatic lines (but based on a free floating tonality) brilliant textures, and a fascination with ever shifting patterns.
The Mysteries of the Macabre is a reworking for trumpet and chamber orchestra of three arias from the opera Le Grande Macabre. The work is full of high humor and quite playful in the manner of Aventures and Novelle Aventures. This is a nice introduction to the opera itself, if you don't think your ready for a two hour Ligeti piece.
I think the thing that strikes me most about Ligeti's music is it varied expressive quality. Unlike so many of the Darmstadt group, who seemed to be interested in removing expressiveness from their work (mostly unsuccessfully I might add) Ligeti embraces the emotional gesture, and a wide gamut of it as well. You sense the shear delight in sound and material. Moments of the works are quite serious, but other movements are infused with a light-hearted humor that you would not usually associate with an avant-garde composer. As a result, I think Ligeti speaks to people more readily than Boulez or Stockhausen, much as I like their work as well. Ligeti is a humanist, like Nono, but one who isn't afraid of humor.
Performances are spectacular. I have the Boulez recording of the piano concerto and this compares well with the Boulez. I like them both. All of the others must be considered definitive.
Take a chance on this disc. If your ears are open, you'll be glad you did.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant new millennium recordings of Ligeti 9 Sep 2001
By Autonomeus - Published on
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Teldec is continuing where Sony left off -- the Ligeti Edition has become the Ligeti Project. By 2003, Teldec plans to release 5 discs that will include all of Ligeti's orchestral music and everything that Sony didn't record in their series of 8. Why 2003? Ligeti will be 80! (See the Teldec site for an interview with Ligeti explaining his goals with the Edition/Project.)

You need not wait too much longer for all Ligeti's best known orchestral works to become available in composer-approved Project form. This disc includes the "Chamber Concerto" (1970), previously available on Wergo, and the "Piano Concerto" (1988), again with Ligeti's favorite pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard, a piece previously recorded by Boulez for DG. I haven't seen "Melodien" (1971) on disc before, and also included is a new version of a section from Ligeti's opera "Le Grande Macabre" featuring trumpet.

Ligeti chose the musicians and directors himself, supervised the recording, and intends these to be the "standard" versions. Magnificent! A chronological presentation would have its merits, but the choice to place the "Piano Concerto" following the earlier works highlights the dramatic shift to a truly postmodern style in Ligeti's most recent period, and it deserves a wide hearing!
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Current Favorite 15 Jun 2005
By Richard Zencker - Published on
Format:Audio CD
Even though I've listened to this since it came out, I never tire of it. The Piano Concerto is truly a wonderful work, both "masterpiece" and joke, and why not? Well, maybe not a joke; though, if you listen carefully, you're bound to chuckle at some point. Beethoven, the classical composer Ligeti reminds me most of, had a sense of humor combined with a taste for complexity also.

In fact, I feel as though I am hearing quotations of Beethoven in the cadenza right near the end of the Concerto, but I just can't place them.

The rest of the disc is just as good. These pieces have all been recorded before; even though "Mysteries of the Macabre" is a orchestral premiere, I've got a Roland Pontinen/Hakan Hardenberger version for piano/trumpet I might prefer. But the other performances are the best I've ever heard of these works. Well-recorded too.
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