Benjamin 'A Mind of Winter' and other Orchestral Works

"I love Mars Bars, I hate Wagner and I want to record your music!" With this memorable introductory gambit delivered to George Benjamin on New Year's Eve 1979, the founder of Nimbus, Count Alexander Numa Labinsky, began a twenty year exclusive association with the composer. Now, on the occasion of George Benjamin's 40th birthday we release a disc which brings together his orchestral works of the 1980s and the first release of the electronic study Panorama.



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“Between March 1979, when Ringed by the flathorizon was begun, and March 1987, when Antara was completed, foundations of remarkable potential were well and truly laid, and it's fascinating to be able to trace that process through four such different George Benjamin works. There are, of course, five items on the disc, but the 2'24" of Panorama – a beguiling, all-too-brief indication of Benjamin's work using pre-recorded tape – form a study for Antara rather than a wholly independent conception.
The overall impression is certainly one of progress, in that the accomplished but in some ways rather stiff procedures to be heard in Ringed by the flat horizon led directly to the magnificently fluent setting of Wallace Stevens in A Mind of Winter, in which lucid instrumental textures provide the ideal foil for a brilliantly resourceful vocal line. In At first light, the stylistic spectrum opens up further, with clear hints of Varèse and even Xenakis. This disc is an essential document of the music of our time.”  - The Gramophone classical msuc guide

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