GERSHWIN : Rhapsody in blue
RODRIGO : Tonadilla
GIORGINAKIS : Greek Memories
PIAZZOLLA : Tango Suite
BACH : Italian Concerto
Alexandra Christodimou and Yannis Petridis
Lyra CD 066626

A powerful arrangement opens this recording and the immediate impression is of good recorded sound. The players attack the music with precision and sufficient dramatic flair to convey the squalling and tempestuous lyricism that Gershwin unravels at every turn. Because of the extreme range of the instrumental writing the guitars frequently sound like Chip and Dale fighting over some nuts : guitarists seem hell-bent on the road to creating mammoth transcriptions so they must expect their instuments to occasionally resemble cartoon reflections of the original article.
Rodrigo's Tonadilla pops along with solid adherence to the cantering pulse of this appealing piece. No slouchers in the technical department Christodimou and Petridis hold the music together with strength and touches of delicacy when required.
The Greek Memories by Giorginakis are striking pieces and the opening Grape Harvest is a thrilling composition with tambora effects and rippling bursts followed by a lovely peaceful song Harvest that captures images of sundrenched fields and is then thrown into the air with the joyous Fiesta.
All good stuff so far and with the fiendish Tango Suite they manage well. They understand the need to combine tight rythmic aloofness with sudden swatces of syrupy lyricism that are trademarks of Piazzolla.
Bach.'s Italian Concerto positively skips with effervescence. The playing is sharp with well controlled contouring of the tone. All three movements are arranged with imaginative and intelligent setting of the voices.
A recording with some fiery moments and well worth a listen. How you find a copy in a record store I would not know and the packaging would cause it to be ignored amongst a selection of more imaginatively designed covers.

Tim Panting, Classical Guitar


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