Irish composer Andrew Hamilton performs his own virtuosic, deadpan and movingly personal work for voice and violin.
“The hallmarks of Hamilton’s style are still there: the frenetic, twitchy energy, the atomised tonality, the continually looping, changing patterns like hand-drawn circles. […] But Joy, Hamilton’s first as soloist playing his own music, explores it in a more intimate space.” – The Journal of Music
★★★★ “[…] something of the effect of someone standing too physically close who is telling you things they shouldn’t.” – The Irish Times
On their debut album, Ficino Ensemble present three works spanning over 120 years – from Johannes Brahms’ Clarinet Quintet (1891); to Maurice Ravel’s virtuosic Introduction and Allegro (1905); to the title track, Winter, by Irish composer Garrett Sholdice, composed especially for them in 2018.
“The Ficino Ensemble has established itself as one of Ireland’s leading chamber groups. Its intelligently programmed, superbly played debut recording illustrates why.” — Michael Quinn, Classical Ear
“…an impressive benchmark in Irish chamber music…” – Michael Lee, Goldenplec
Seán Mac Erlaine
Seán Mac Erlaine’s richly-textured woodwind sound meets an expanded palette through collaborations with Norwegian jazz luminaries Jan Bang and Eivind Aarset on the Irish musician’s breathtaking third album.
“Empty Ears is a seductive listen with a distinctive voice all its own.” – The Wire
“Music for Empty Ears glows as if lit from within.” – Cormac Larkin, The Irish Times
“The rich-textured woodwind sound of Seán Mac Erlaine scintillates … and damn near coins a new musical language.” – Electronic Sound
“The album’s dreaminess is more than superficial. It follows the logic of dreams.” – The Journal of Music
Dublin composer Jonathan Nangle’s transcendent music for strings comes to life in these luminous recordings by Crash Ensemble, Ireland’s foremost ensemble for adventurous new music.
Inspired by the secret histories of landscapes, old maps and memory, this music by Dublin composer Benedict Schlepper-Connolly possesses the ecstatic, unforced beauty of the natural world – at once minimal and teeming with matter.
“…a thing of rare, rich beauty…” – Michael Quinn, Classical Ear
“…filled with a haunting beauty…” – Whole Note Magazine (Canada)
“This is a very strong modern classical work, inspired by old maps, memory and importantly – landscapes. It feels like a fresh, outdoor record – perfect for Autumn and the colder months ahead. Highly recommended.” — Irregular Crates
A treasury of chamber music highlighting Netherlands-based composer Peter Adriaansz’ fastidious artistic mind, featuring Saskia Lankhoorn (piano), Ensemble Klang and Trio Scordatura.
“Blissful to experience.” – De Volkskrant
“Each of these mesmerising pieces combines precise construction with an otherworldly sonic halo, its crystalline clarity of design tinged with complicating radiance.” – The Wire
An engrossing sweep of the Irish composer David Collier’s recent work.
“…this music is ingenious, inventive and actually full of tension despite the seeming serene focus. The nuance of touch and timbre are brilliant and that timelessness … that frozen quality of the combination of sometimes busy surface and slowly unfolding structure, that is bewitching here. Momentum and stasis.” – Bernard Clarke, Nova, RTÉ lyric fm
Simon O'Connor & Michelle O'Rourke
Composer Simon O’Connor and vocalist Michelle O’Rourke present a collection of haunting songs inspired by the stories of the widows of rebel leaders involved in the 1916 Easter Rising.
“There was no shortage of music contributions for the 1916 centenary, but I doubt if there was anything more original or insightful than this thought-provoking collection that focused not on the rebel leaders, but on their wives and sweethearts.” – The Sunday Business Post
Franz Schubert's ever-popular Four Impromptus, Opus 90 presented in a totally new context, performed with rare sensitivity by Belfast-born pianist Michael McHale.
“…a nuanced masterpiece…” – The Sunday Business Post
“Spirited, well-shaped Schubert” – BBC Music Magazine
An immaculately crafted, beautiful and poignant collection of nine piano pieces, Simon O’Connor’s debut solo album is the result of over three years work from conception to release.
“… an hour-long meditative, introspective work that … lounges in being hard to place … [E]xtended duration and emotional directness are key to the work’s effect.” – Liam Cagney, The Journal of Music
“”…music that moves with a glacial pace interrupted by turbulent surges but always exuding a gentle, glowing warmth … Belfast pianist Michael McHale plays with the utmost care for tonal detail and under-stated textural sophistication.” – Michael Quinn, Classical Ear
“Immediately obvious in Kevin Volans’s hypnotic new chamber compendium is the conflicting tug and tumult of deep, dislocating emotional currents…. Performances by long-time Volans collaborators Waldo Alexander (violin/viola) and Jill Richards (piano) are beautifully modulated and full of glistening details. Excellent recorded sound.” – Michael Quinn, classicalear.co.uk
“…a composer who is too flexible to be locked into expectations…” – The Wire, December 2015
Christopher Fox & Anton Lukoszevieze
A complementary CD (The feeling of remembering) and vinyl (re:play) set, this release presents beautifully introspective music for cello by English composer Christopher Fox, performed by Anton Lukoszevieze.
“…a distinct flavour of distilled Elizabethan melancholia.” – Philip Clark, The Wire
Irish Youth Chamber Choir
Rise up, my love, the fresh and vital debut record from the Irish Youth Chamber Choir under their conductor Greg Beardsell, features music by contemporary choral masters Howard Skempton, Gabriel Jackson, Pēteris Vasks and Eric Whitacre.
“A triumph” – Tim Thurston, Gloria, RTÉ lyric fm
“…a musical calling card of consummate elegance…”– Michael Quinn, Classical Ear
Seán Mac Erlaine
Released on limited edition, transparent orange vinyl, with stunning artwork by Craig Carry, woodwind instrumentalist and composer Seán Mac Erlaine’s second solo album is a place where haunting melodies are living, growing things, developing in sympathy with nuanced loops and fluttering particles of sound.
“Mac Erlaine is an explorer at the frontiers of sound.” ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ — The Irish Times
Revelatory, celebratory music by Garrett Sholdice, Benedict Schlepper-Connolly and Linda Buckley inspired by Christmas music by a mediæval master, and performed by Ergodos Musicians: vocalist Michelle O’Rourke, clarinettist Jonathan Sage and cellist Kate Ellis, with Sholdice and Schlepper-Connolly on piano and guitar respectively.
… [An] eloquent meditation … The mood is spiritual, perhaps, but hardly sectarian, with a warm bath production style taking full advantage of studio effects – I Care If You Listen Magazine
The first release devoted entirely to the music of Judith Ring. Painterly, sensuous, dark and beautiful music from one of Ireland’s most important composers, featuring performances from some of the finest exponents of new Irish music, including Paul Roe, Kate Ellis, Malachy Robinson, Michelle O’Rourke, Natasha Lohan and Concorde, as well as genre-crossing performers such as Laura Moody and Beau Stocker.
… the Vinko Globokar-esque imaginings of composer Judith Ring … – I Care If You Listen Magazine
Working closely with the members of Ergodos Musicians, composers Garrett Sholdice and Benedict Schlepper-Connolly arrange, re-compose, weave and stitch material drawn from the songs they love, spanning over 800 years of music, from John Dowland and Vivaldi to Steve Earle, Richard Thompson and The xx.
‘Nothing could better exemplify the continued vitality of the song tradition’ ★★★★ ‘CD Choice’ – The Irish Times
Scott Mc Laughlin
The debut album from Scott McLaughlin, an Irish composer of immersive, experimental music, currently based in the UK. Immediately arresting and all-consuming, the album features highly focused performances by Quatour Bozzini, Trio Scordatura, Jonathan Sage, Iain Harrison, and the Metastable Collective.
This album is a delivery system for concentrated listening […] it comes highly recommended… – Stephen Graham, Tempo
Toner Quinn & Malachy Bourke
Appearing together for the first time in many years, fiddle duo Toner Quinn and Malachy Bourke performed Dublin’s Unitarian Church in June 2011. This is a record of that concert – a document of two of Ireland’s finest traditional musicians re-visiting and evolving a shared, highly personal language.
‘A distilled delight’ – The Irish Times
A captivating release by one of England’s finest young musicians, combining three different approaches to counterpoint, an elemental musical technique running through centuries of music.
In every track Jonathan’s playing is excellent […] I found myself listening to [Another Country by Benedict Schlepper-Connolly] time after time. Excellent! – Kenneth Morris, Clarinet and Saxophone Society Magazine.
I Call to You is a record of music inspired by music by Baroque master Johann Sebastian Bach, and performed by the Dublin-based group Ergodos Musicians. A project conceived in the darker moments of Ireland’s financial crisis, this is music that underlines a sense of hope, and renewal.
…perhaps the most important record of new Irish music released this year. ★★★★★ — RTÉ Ten
…characteristically intelligent, inquisitive and full of altogether beguiling sounds. With Baroque sensibilities left intact, the overall tone here is contemplative and quietly celebratory … one of the year’s most beautiful and moving discs ★★★★★ — Classical Ear
Seán Mac Erlaine
Long After the Music is Gone is the new solo album from Dublin-based woodwind instrumentalist and composer Seán Mac Erlaine. It’s an album of extraordinary ambience, rich with Mac Erlaine’s distinctive supple reed work and subtle electronics. With each track Mac Erlaine seems to channel the atmosphere of a space or vista, immersing us.
An extraordinary solo recording… consistently one of the most interesting and adventurous musicians of his generation. ★★★★ — The Irish Times.
Curiously lovely tunes… I want to hear everything that Seán Mac Erlaine’s ever done. Compliments don’t get much bigger. — Hot Press
Fluence is a two-track EP by Alexander Harker. Harker negotiates the terrains of acoustic and synthesized sound with a rare dexterity, conjuring highly variegated work that feels as if it could turn in any direction at any moment.
Not is a gently undulating ambient electronic work by English composer Clive Wilkinson. Haunted by the ghost of the “sad bird” in Maurice Ravel’s piano masterpiece Miroirs, Not is both an elegy and an atmosphere.
Maya Homburger & Barry Guy
Star features three meditative string duos by Irish composers Benedict Schlepper-Connolly, Garrett Sholdice and Simon O’Connor. These three works, each composed specifically for the incomparable Baroque violin/double bass duo of Maya Homburger and Barry Guy, are a reminder of the value of concentration, quietude, and slowness. Star is now available on limited edition vinyl.
Immersia is an EP of ambient electronica by Cork-born composer Linda Buckley. Each of the three tracks traverses the same territory, finding new contours, new plateaus.
Dubh is the debut album from Trio Scordatura and the first release on the Ergodos Records imprint. Dubh is about a certain generation of Irish composers, a generation that is finding its place between tradition and the modern world. A consistent atmosphere of slow-burning introspection prevails.
“… a startling disc … the nub of everything here is Trio Scordatura: an idiosyncratic voice, Harry Partch inspired-viola and MIDI keyboards. Whatever the approach or challenge set, this ensemble investigates with such thoroughness and panache so that each work sets one on a sonic adventure.” – Bernard Clarke, cmc.ie