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Marimba Singular CD

Price: $5.00

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One composer, one performer, two songs and 13 minutes of music encompass this new recording. Daniel Levitan, a well-known composer for his rhythmically challenging and hip-sounding percussion works, wrtoe two pieces for the James Preiss Solo Marimba Commissioning Project. New York marimbist Simon Boyar performs both solos with conviction, leaving no doubt to the listener that he is in control.
The first piece, "Marimba Singular," is a 10-minute, groove-oriented composition that feels more like a moto-perpetual work with no end in sight. Boyar does a great job of maintaining a high energy level required by Levitan's writing in which each phrase moves immediately to the next without a break. Boyar also successfully interprets the different accents and ghost notes within the framework of constant syncopated rhythms, creating an angular approach to the entire piece. While Boyar plays the technical aspects of this challenging work well, including playing three layers of music at once, there are times when the sound quality becomes harsh during the louder sections. Additionally, the softer sections lack the nuance that would give the piece more dimension and direction, guiding the listener on exactly what to hear.
This angularity and forcefulness is continued with "The Rollover," even though this composition sounds more graceful and lyrcial. Both works have the typical Levitan syncopations, but "The Rollover" has a simple and clear melody with a bass line accompaniment. Boyar, once again, plays the rhythms with confidence, but the sound and approach seem too strict to allow the melody to sing and flow naturally with the phrase. The melody suffers at the expense of precise rhythmic accuracy.
Brian Zator, Percussive Notes -- November 2011

Tracks1. Marimba Singular

2.The Rollover