Italian composer Giovanni Albini takes a highly modern approach to Western musical traditions by organising his beautifully structured music through precise mathematical patterns. His musical language explores what might be defined as a harmonic continuum, where suspended triads, simple voice leading and diatonic scales form the foundation of his unique compositions. Concert works are just one facet of his oeuvre, which also takes in television, video games and multimedia installations.
This new release showcases four works from Albini’s sacred oeuvre, including his Pange lingua, full of powerful energy and drama, and the Missa Prima, performed for the first time at the reopening of the 15th-century Pavia Cathedral in 2012 after almost 30 years of restoration. The other two works on the disc, Testamento Spirituale for wind quartet and Preghiera for recorder trio, give the voice a different role, with the instrumental music of the former originating from the a text by Father Christian de Cherge, and the voice no longer present in the latter – described in the liner note as ‘more of a hidden memory’.
Seasoned performers of 20th-century repertoire, the Choir of the Faculty of Musicology Cremona gives dedicated performances of Albini’s music in this collection under the baton of Ingrid Pustijanac, with excellent instrumental support from musicians of the 15.19ensemble and Il Giardino delle Muse.
Giovanni Albini is a fascinating figure in contemporary art, as he developed a unique and personal composition technique in which the course of music is designed by mathematical patterns (Albini is a mathematician as well as a composer). That this doesn’t lead to theoretical and dry structures is proven by his sacred music on this CD, which is alive with emotional tension and powerful drama.
Performed with devotion and commitment by Italian modern music ensembles, directed by the composer.
The composers explains his music in the booklet text.
Booklet includes liner notes, sung texts, artist biographies
Recorded in 2014 in Milan