Overlapping textures and soft, shifting timbres are the most recognizable features of Morton Feldman's music, and his attractive sonorities draw listeners in ways other avant-garde sound structures may not. This music's appeal is also attributable to its gentle ambience, a static, meditative style that Feldman pioneered long before trance music became commonplace. The three works on this disc are among Feldman's richest creations, yet the material in each piece is subtly layered and integrated so well that many details will escape detection on first hearing. In Piano and Orchestra, the piano is treated as one texture among many, receding to the background and blending with muted brass and woodwinds in a wash of colors. Cello and Orchestra might seem like a conventional concerto movement, especially since the cellist is centrally placed on this recording and plays with a rather lyrical tone. However, Feldman's orchestral clusters are dense and interlocked, which suggests that the cello should be less prominent and blend more into the mass of sounds behind it. No such ambiguity exists in the performance of Coptic Light, which Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony Orchestra play with even dynamics and careful attention to the work's aggregate effect, which is mesmerizing.
Formed in 1980, Watford band Sad Lovers & Giants carved a unique furrow through the 1980s independent music scene, creating music which was haunting, atmospheric, melodic and evocative and which somehow straddled post-punk, synth pop, psychedelia and indie.
A New World Record is the sixth studio album by Electric Light Orchestra (ELO). It was released in October 1976 on United Artists Records in the U.S., and on 19 November 1976 on Jet Records in the United Kingdom. A New World Record marked ELO's shift towards shorter pop songs, a trend which would continue across their career. Their second album to be recorded at Musicland Studios in Munich, the LP proved to be the band's breakthrough in the UK; after their previous three studio recordings failed to chart in their home market, A New World Record became their first top ten album in the UK. It became a global success and reached multi-platinum status in the US and UK, The album sold five million units worldwide within its first year of release.