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The Piano Works 9: New Discoveries

The Piano Works 9: New Discoveries by Jovita Zähl
Released: Oct 2013
Label: MODE
Who knew there were more early, notated John Cage pieces we hadn't heard? The sketches that make up the Haiku series here (Tracks 1-7), from 1951, predate their cousins among the Seven Haiku. Of even more interest is a restored piano score for Sixteen Dances (Tracks 8-23), created for Merce Cunningham's dance troupe in 1951. The atonal language shows Boulez's growing influence on Cage, though this is leavened by Merce's requirements, like the need for a "Blues" (Track 17). Cage was always in transition, but some of the inflection points are more interesting than others. This one's quite cool.
Seth Colter Walls