Chants Juifs, thirty years later

When this CD landed on my ‘to do’ pile, I had to take a really good look at it for a moment. Because: hey, what’s new? I’ve owned this CD for over thirty years? When it came out, the recording was really something exceptional, people were only then becoming a little aware of what the fascists and anti-Semites had done.

Thirty years old, in other words. Does it matter? Yes and no. More recordings of Jewish traditional and liturgical music have been published during that time, but I really liked the renewed acquaintance with cellist Sonia Wieder-Atherton and pianist Daria Hovora. Both these ladies’ playing is emotionally charged, poetic and very appealing.

The 1989 recording had been preceded by a special event. The filmmaker Chantal Akerman filmed a special document, in which all Jewish residents of Brooklyn were allowed to participate. The cellist was also involved in that, and she was asked to create music to accompany the film.

Three pieces by Ravel have now been added to the original album, these were recorded in 2006 by the Sinfonia Varsovia olv János Fürst, I find this quite unfortunate. Maurice Delage’s arrangements detract from the poetic and emotional atmosphere of the first 14 tracks. It feels like being brutally woken after a time of dreamlike contemplation by rock-hard heavy metal. Well, not really because Delage died back in 1961, but… why? The sound (or should I say colour?) of Atherton’s cello has also changed, less warm, more distant.

Colette Brunschwig’s illustrations are undoubtedly impressive but also terrifying. My advice: skip the last three tracks and keep on dreaming, you won’t regret it. Hence also my high rating.

One comment

  1. The recordings of Jewish music by Sonia Wieder-Atherton and Daria Hovora are sublime. Thank you, Basiu, for posting it. Listening to it was an unexpected and wonderful gift.

    Geliked door 1 persoon

Geef een reactie

Vul je gegevens in of klik op een icoon om in te loggen. logo

Je reageert onder je account. Log uit /  Bijwerken )

Facebook foto

Je reageert onder je Facebook account. Log uit /  Bijwerken )

Verbinden met %s