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Lux Aeterna CD

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1. Lux aeterna foo two psalm singers - Alexender Knaifel - Thomas Demenga
2. Duo? o, Du.... - Thomas Demenga - Thomas Demenga
3. Sonata No. 10, G major: Andante - Jean Barriere - Patrick Demenga
4. Sonata No. 10, G major: Adagio - Jean Barriere - Thomas Demenga
5. Sonata No. 10, G major: Allegro prestissimo - Jean Barriere - Thomas Demenga
6. Wendungen - Roland Moser - Patrick Demenga
7. Redshift - Barry Guy - Patrick Demenga

Product Description

The prodigiously gifted cellist brothers from Berne, Switzerland, in a rare duo programme - with première recordings of new music by Alexander Knaifel and Barry Guy, and compositions by Roland Moser, Thomas Demenga and Jean Barrière. As The Strad noted, "Few are prepared for the sensational panache, dazzling virtuosity and sheer musicianship that characterises the Demenga brothers' playing. A wholly remarkable album. Their instrumental virtuosity and musical imagination are so engrossing as to have the listener hanging on to their every note...another peerless performance by this remarkable duo, in ravishingly seductive sound from the great Manfred Eicher"

Recorded 1998

Patrick Demenga - (cello), Thomas Demenga - (cello)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Compelling and Rewarding 17 July 2009
By Karl W. Nehring - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The opening work on this ECM New Series CD, Alexander Kneifel's (b. 1943) Lux aeterna, is one of the most fascinating, compelling, intriguing, and rewarding compositions--and performances--that I have heard for quite some time. The sounds that the Demenga brothers achieve, combining their two cellos with their two voices, are haunting and expressive. You will think at times when listening to this cut that you are listening to a chamber orchestra and choir. The music is hard to describe: ethereal yet corporeal, vast yet intimate, deeply resonant both sonically and spiritually.

This CD would well be worth purchasing for the title cut alone, but there's more, much more, including a duo for two cellos by Thomas Demenga, a sonata for two cellos by Jean Barrière (1705-1747), which shows that the Demengas can also play expressively in music that the average music listener is more likely to find familiar in style, and compositions by contemporary composers Roland Moser (b. 1943) and Barry Guy (b. 1947). The Demengas get a chance to exhibit their technique and their impressive range of sonority, and the sound quality is rich and resonant.

Lux aeterna is a CD that will open up your ears and minds to the myriad musical possibilities inherent in just two musicians. Those who love the sound of the cello should run right out and pick up this CD, as should those who love hearing virtuoso performances regardless of musical genre.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Music for Two Cellos 27 Jun. 2010
By Grady Harp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This rather extraordinary CD recital is well named LUX AETERNA: the most impressive composition on this richly detailed traversal of the capabilities of sound that can be extracted from two celli as selected and perform by Patrick and Thomas Demenga is the works that opens the CD. 'Lux aeterna' is by Alexander Aronovich Knaifel born November 28, 1943 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, a Russian composer best known for his operas 'The Ghost of Canterville' and 'Alice in Wonderland'. He is part of the avant-garde Soviet composers that includes Alfred Schnittke, Valentin Silvestrov, Arvo Pärt, and others. His works at times tax the listener by their seemingly endless length, but he has always manages to stay in the forefront of musical interest by his strange combination of instruments. Such can be said of the Lux Aeterna. Here two cellos play at the opposite ends of the dynamic spectrum while incorporating their voices in the medieval chant style that makes the work so mysterious. The complete name of the work is 'Lux Aeterna, for 2 psalmodists', and after one experience with the Demenga brothers and this bizarre composer most listeners will crave more exposure.

The remainder of the works on this include a fine work by Thomas Demenga, 'Duo? o Du...' that echoes much of the language of Knaifel, a sonata for 2 cellos by Jean-Baptiste Barrière (2 May 1707 - 6 June 1747) which demonstrates just how fine these men are in the classical repertoire as they perform a work written for the viol. The recital closes with two fine contemporary works by the contemporary Swiss composer Roland Moser and by Brisitsh Double Bassist/composer Barry John Guy, both writing works for two cellos alone. The Demenga brothers are put to test with these works and prove that they can carry off the entire spectrum of music written for the cello. This is a unique CD to add to the ever growing library of fine contemporary music produced by ECM. Grady Harp, June 10
Knaifel's "Lux aeterna" may be for small forces, but it's just as mighty as his orchestral works 15 Oct. 2011
By Christopher Culver - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I came across this disc of works for two cellos while exploring the output of the Russian composer Alexander Knaifel. While there are other pieces here (by Barry Guy, Jean Barrier and Roland Moser) I shall limit my remarks to Knaifel's "Lux Aeterna" for two cellos (1998).

Knaifel belongs to the same generation as Gubaidulina, Part and Silvestrov, and like them he began as an avant-gardist in the 1960s before turning in a spiritual direction. His recent music is highly individual, generally based on long-held string notes played as harmonics and at low dynamic, with tonal intervals and rarely more than two or three voices at a time. Describing his music with words risks making him sound fluff, but his music is one of the deepest listening experiences I've ever had. There's an immense beauty to the music, and the sound is like some kind of living energy. Though "Lux Aeterna" is for small forces, it has just the same power as his orchestral writing. At various points the cellists hum while playing, which far from seeming like an unwelcome intrusion adds a glorious new dimension to the work. If this is your introduction to Knaifel and you enjoy it, be sure to check out other ECM discs: Blazhenstva, Svete Tikhiy and Amicta Sole.
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