01 Aiyun HuangResonances
Aiyun Huang
Sideband Records 06 (sidebandrecords.com)

Virtuoso percussionist Aiyun Huang has recorded a selection of new works that challenge the performer in different ways. In each, the listener is immersed in varying intimate and unique sound worlds. In a piece titled Désastre, Inouk Demers produces a dreamy landscape that evokes slowly descending sonic blankets upon the watershed resonance of gongs and cymbals. This homogenous and enchanting piece creates a wondrous metallic stasis – fittingly so, as the work’s title suggests something falling from the stars. Chris Mercer’s Concerto Chamber places an acoustic guitar into the percussion setup and asks the percussionist to strike it with mallets, slides, rubber balls and a triangle beater. Mercer cleverly infuses his piece with these novel percussive guitar sounds amid a flurry of spellbinding auras that are highly impressive and otherworldly in their creative expanse. In Valerio Sannicandro’s Disentio (translated as “extension”), Huang exhibits her world-class command over the vibraphone in a piece full of expression and angular melodic leaps. Canadian composer Chris Paul Harman creates hypnotic intricacies in Verve – an evocative piece that spans the entire range and resonant capabilities of the marimba. The soloist must use their voice to execute percussive utterances that alternate with tambourine and drum punchiness. With each piece, Huang delivers a performance of the highest quality – a testament toward why she is among the leading percussion soloists of our time.

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Author: Adam Scime
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