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Brilliant Brass - works by Malcolm Arnold, Joseph Lanner, Thomas Gansch, Victor Ewald, Werner Pirchner / Wien-Berlin Brass Quintett

Album Summary

>Gansch, Thomas : Flotter 5er, for brass quintet
>Ewald, Victor : Brass Quintet no 1 in B flat major, Op. 5
>Lanner, Josef : Steyrische Tänze (Styrian Dances), for 2 violins, viola & double bass, Op. 165
>Arnold, Malcolm : Quintet no 1 for 2 trumpets, horn, trombone & tuba, Op. 73
>Pirchner, Werner : L'homme au Marteau dans la Poche et autres Travaux Appliqués, for brass quintet, PWV 52
Ensemble Composers

Notes & Reviews:

The Heavy Metal brigade began its triumphant progress alongside the magicians of tone colour and orchestration Hector Berlioz and Richard Strauss. Jazz and light music also contributed to the emancipation brass players. "Brilliant Brass" inspiringly depicts this via the repertoire of the brass quintet. First with two "classics" by Victor Ewald and Malcolm Arnold (unforgettable as the composer of the music for the film "The Bridge over the River Kwai"), then with works from Austria: a transcription of the melodious "Steyrische Taenze" by Joseph Lanner, "Flotter 5er" by Thomas Gansch, and the Suite "L'homme au Marteau dans la Poche" ("The Man with a Hammer in his Pocket") - two sparklingly witty works of breathtaking virtuosity performed con brio and con moto in such a way that Heavy Metal should now be renamed Heavenly Metal.

American Record Guide, March/April 2016
The program includes one transcription (Joseph Lanner's so-familiar 'Styrian Dances'), two staples of the brass quintet repertory (Ewald and Arnold quintets), and two newer works (Gansch and Pirchner). The Lanner is tossed off with Viennese ease and style.

This reading of Victor Ewald's Quintet 1 is now my favorite, for several reasons. First, trombonist Kublbock plays euphonium instead of trombone, making it an all-valves and very dark-sounding ensemble. Second, the tempos in I and III are the fastest I have heard, and they sound great. And third, it all sounds (again) easy and simple, yet still quite expressive.

As for the Arnold: I is fairly standard. The Chaconne (II) is icy calm, and III is very fast and amazingly precise and cohesive. The final two-trumpet flurry is the best I have heard - again, because of the combination of ease and precision.

The new pieces open and close the program. Thomas Gansch's eight-minute 'Flotter 5er' is a virtuoso showpiece of the highest order, one that would make an audience roar. Everyone has solos, and the technical skills are incredible. Werner Pirchner's piece has a remarkable title: The Man with a Hammer in his Pocket and other practical applications. The seven whimsically named movements are varied in style, witty, and demanding.

Spectacular album by a superb brass quintet.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014).



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Works Details

>Gansch, Thomas : Flotter 5er, for brass quintet
  • Ensemble: Wien-Berlin Brass Quintet
  • Notes: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Ewald, Victor : Brass Quintet no 1 in B flat major, Op. 5
  • Notes: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic

>Lanner, Josef : Steyrische Tänze (Styrian Dances), for 2 violins, viola & double bass, Op. 165
  • Notes: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1841

>Arnold, Malcolm : Quintet no 1 for 2 trumpets, horn, trombone & tuba, Op. 73
  • Notes: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 4 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1960

>Pirchner, Werner : L'homme au Marteau dans la Poche et autres Travaux Appliqués, for brass quintet, PWV 52
  • Notes: Symphonia-Studios (Wiener Symphoniker), Wien (05/02/2014-05/05/2014)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 36 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary