Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Christopher Whitley - Describe Yourself [Redshift Records]

Released via Canada's Redshift Records label on June 23rd, 2k23 is "Describe Yourself", the latest album effort conceived by violin player Christopher Whitley who, in opposite to previous longplay outings, doesn't perform his own music on this one but tackles compositions written by the likes of Jeffrey Ryan, Nicole Lizee, Leslie Ting, Fjola Evans and others over the course of roughly 45 minutes. This being said Whitley's instrument of choice for the recording of this album is a 1700 built Stradivari violin which in itself makes these interpretations a special treat for all fans and followers of Classical music, despite the pieces performed being of contemporary nature. Spanning a musical ark ranging from expressive, dramatic and even romantic melodies accompanied by occasional vocal expressions in "Bellatrix" which, to some extent, follows along the lines of (Neo)Classical composition without drifting too far off to the more off-kilter and seemingly electronically x experimentally backed sequences of "Don't Throw Your Head In Your Hands" and the Spoken Word- x conversation-led title track which features only minimalist interventions to an effect that makes this one our personal favorite on the album due to its quasi-voyeuristic intimacy. In "Patterns In High Places" Whitley presents a highly emotional and dynamic approach to cascading motifs of increasing speed and intensity whereas "Six Tableuax For Violin" is comprised of six short, almost hovering interludes before the final "In Bruniquel Cave" brings forth a calm, tender and almost caressing compositional approach to (Neo)Classical Music for a closing. If that's what you're looking for as an avid fan of the genre go find yourself a copy.

Album artwork on Instagram!


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