Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
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This truly unique recording for Signum sees Joby Burgess arrange some of Eric Whitacre’s ever-popular choral works for Marimba quartet. The warm, earthy sound of the marimbas makes for a spectacular record.
His music contains many of the things I love in choral music; lush tonal harmonies, strong audience engagement and a firm spiritual connection. We also share a similar taste in 1980s pop, although I would be the 4th member of A-ha, not the 5th member of Depeche Mode!
I began with three pieces from the album Light and Gold, which sit perfectly for marimba quartet, positioning four players at two marimbas.
I transcribed Sleep replacing the voices with the warm, earthy tones of the marimbas to make an evocative marimba chorale. In contrast, A boy and a girl contains some eighth note passages to convey momentum, whilst Lux aurumque employs up to twelve mallets across the instruments to keep the original division of parts.
For October I added two vibraphones (played without motor) to the marimbas, to utilize the wider sound pallet of the mallet quartet. Working from the choral version Alleluia this music chimes and sparkles, a humble meditation on the glory of autumn.
Joby Burgess © 2020