The Ligeti Project II

Berliner Philharmoniker, Nott

This, Volume 2 in an ongoing series, is probably the best thing done for modern music since Robert Craft recorded the complete works of Arnold Schoenberg for Columbia in the 1960s. György Ligeti’s sonically startling and mind-bending orchestral work Atmosphères is familiar from Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Overlooked but even more impressive is the tone poem Lontano (Far Away), which captures a mystical feeling of remoteness—not only from distant worlds but also from musical history. Subtle, déja vù reminiscences of Claude Debussy’s harmonies, or the classical syntax in general, are quietly viewed as if they were a cryptic, ancient jungle ruin. Start with the young Ligeti’s Concert Romanesc (Romanian Concerto), romantic, lyrical and fiery music that brings to mind George Enesco’s Romanian Rhapsodies.