Aarhus Sinfonietta

This collection of six influential works by such eminent composers as Anton Webern, Toru Takemitsu and Witold Lutoslawski is irresistible on a number of levels. First of all, there’s the sheer pleasure of the album title, which makes it sound like a K-Tel TV offer. Second, there’s the indisputable quality of the selections: In addition to the György Ligeti, they include Webern’s Concerto Op. 24, Edgard Varese’s spectacular "Octandre," Lutoslawski’s "Chain I," Takemitsu’s "Rain Coming" and Harrison Birtwhistle’s "Ritual Fragment." Last is the consistently high quality of the performances by the Aarhus Sinfonietta. To really do an album like this right, you’d need at least two discs so that musique concrete, minimalism and aleatory composition could be represented as well, but this is still a great overview of the major movements in 20th century music. The hits just keep on coming!