Eshpai Edition, Vol. 2
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Exciting modern music in the Prokofiev-Khachaturian tradition.

Most music lovers' first acquaintance with the music of Andrei Eshpai was with the Concerto for Orchestra on the old Melodyia LP. If you remember this disc, then you will remember two things; how delightful the music was and what a great recording it was. Well, here in great sound, we have this very same performance for everyone to enjoy. Even though the performance of the Piano Concerto is in mono sound, we felt that because of the historical significance of this performance, it should be included in this series. The excitement is palpable - every measure bristles with energy. To complete the disc, a more somber work, Symphony No. 7. Here is an example of Eshpai's more recent music - still beautiful and appealing.
Andrei Eshpai, composer
Concerto for Orchestra with Solo Trumpet, Piano, Vibraphone & Double Bass
USSR State Large Symphony Orchestra, Evgeny Svetlanov, conductor, Anatoly Maksimenko, trumpet, Piotr Meshaninov, piano, Boris Stepanov, vibraphone, Rodion Azarhin, double bass

Andrei Eshpai, composer
Concerto No. 2 for Piano & Orchestra
USSR State Large Symphony Orchestra, Evgeny Svetlanov, conductor

Andrei Eshpai, composer
Symphony No. 7
USSR State Large Symphony Orchestra, Evgeny Svetlanov, conductor

"...Khachaturian discovers progressive jazz would be a rough guide to those about to discover Eshpai's Concerto for trumpet, piano, vibraphone, and double bass, the often frenetic energy of the first movement leading to virtuoso displays for the solo instruments. The result is a noisy, hyperactive, and colorful orchestral score....The performance is vivid and vivacious...That mood has disappeared by the time he composed the Second Piano Concerto, its roots going back to the concertos of Prokofiev. Strongly rhythmic and dramatic, the three movements return to a tonal base, with the tender slow movement being derived from the influences of the Mari folk music from the area of Eshpai's birth....The Seventh Symphony dates from 1991-92, and shows yet another shift, this time toward the general style of contemporary Scandinavian music....How this very fine symphony could come from the same composer who 26 years earlier had composed the concerto that opened the disc is beyond my comprehension. I only hope the remainder of his symphonies will prove as rewarding...." (Fanfare)
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