John McLeod: Complete Solo Piano Music

rveiew john mcelod x1 cong

John McLeod CBE (born 1934) is a contemporary Scottish composer, and his love of the piano began as a schoolboy growing up in Aberdeen. This new (ish, we’ve had it some time) recording of his works for solo piano was made at four concerts given in the Stoller Hall, Manchester, as part of the Chetham’s International School and Festival for Pianists in 2017.

The players are Murray McLachlan, and his daughter Rose McLachlan.

McLachlan Sr’s playing is impressive, from the off playing quickly but accurately; we often say music flows but in places this flows like a river in flood, the notes cascading out of the speakers but McLachlan always in control. McLachlan Jr plays on a couple of tracks and is equally impressive.

Musically, the word is jagged, but never jarring. McLeod goes in for big, bold direct sounds, although despite the complexity it’s got a directness about it. A stimulating programme. This is a double album, with over 158 minutes of music.

It’s out on Divine Arts Metier label, MSV 77207.

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About jerobear

Weekly newspaper editor in Cheshire, England. I blog my editorials and the CDs I write about. I play drums, drink coffee, play music, meditate. I hate filling in forms.

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