After I listened to the NEUMA recording of The Time Curve Preludes, I read Kile Gann’s note on post-minimalism and the liner notes written by pianist Emanuele Arciuli to accompany the cd. Their comments helped me to begin to understand what the late American composer William Duckworth was up to.

Listening to the twelve preludes of Duckworth I came away with a sense of serene tranquility in music devoid of any dynamic excesses, rhythmically steady, affirmingly tonal, loosely structured and lacking any rigidity, heartfelt but sober and elegant.

The preludes follow each other in felicitous succession, nuanced in every aspect, lovingly delivered by the superlative Italian pianist Emmanuele Arciuli, unencumbered by any of the flashiness that invades so much of today’s concert music. The miniatures are no longer than five minutes, several around two minutes in length.

The cd also includes five Simple Songs About Sex and War, sung in a child-like voice by the Italian vocalist Costanza Savarese, with Emmanuele Arciuli accompanying.

The recording of The Time Curve Preludes was engineered by Giovanni Chiapparino. Phillip Blackburn designed and edited the cd.

Rafael de Acha ©2023

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