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Cage is by no means a synonym for obligingness. All the more astonished we listen to the melodious and harmonious objects Annelie Gahl and Klaus Lang present on this album. Lang, the trained organist and internationally renowned composer, performs these pieces on a Fender Rhodes for the first time. Gahl, known as a versatile interpreter of both Old and New Music, plays the violin exactly as requested by Cage, without vibrato and with minimum weight on the bow.
The musical material dates back to the 18th century. It is based on chorales, hymns and congregational songs of the East Coast Protestant Church, all of them written by composers already born as Americans and only indirectly related to European musical traditions. Cage adapted and fragmented these pieces of utility music, and positioned them in time as individual, singular objects. Our First Listener for this album, Heinz Janisch, an author of children’s books, has created 15 brief episodes, illustrating the fascination of Cage and his unique approach to music in amazingly vivid images