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Gudmundsson: Windbells

Gudmundsson: Windbells

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Note: this double-disc release contains both a CD and a Blu-ray Audio disc. The latter will only play on devices with Blu-ray read capability.

Hugi Guðmundsson writes: “The title piece, Equilibrium IV: Windbells, was the seed this whole album grew from. It was premièred under rather unusual circumstances at the 2005 World Expo in Japan in a venue that more closely resembled a stadium than a concert stage for classical music. I was an integral part of the performance due to the interactive electronics in the piece. We had practiced that I would maintain eye contact with the musicians during performances, just a few meters from the stage. However, the mixer I was operating at the concert was housed in something that resembled an air traffic control tower some 100 meters away from the stage. Or at least it felt that way. From my perspective, the musicians were like tiny ants in one corner of the enormous stage and they could not see me at all. Despite these outlandish circumstances, we somehow managed to perform the piece.

"It has since become one of my most performed chamber pieces and has received several awards and recognitions. It has never been recorded in a studio up until now. So, after a recent performance with Reykjavík Chamber Orchestra, where it received very warm reviews, we decided it was time to do something about it. That snowballed into what is now this album…”


Icelandic composer Hugi Guðmundsson has crafted an idiom combining neo-tonality and modernist inflections, with deliberate rhythms often based on slowly evolving ostinatos. Aspects of rhythmic construction loom large here on this portrait CD for Sono Luminus, as well as Guðmundsson’s incorporation of electronics into chamber works. Guðmundsson’s inclusion on the label is most welcome. He has a distinctive creative voice, and Windbells is a thoroughly persuasive recording.


Performances throughout are distinct and characterful, but the bold musicianship of flautist Áshildur Haraldsdóttir deserves special mention; her playing is assertive and daring in its breathy ferocity, while equally capable of singing with the sweetest clarity.

-- BBC Music Magazine

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  • Release Specifications

    • Number of Discs: 2
    • Release Date:
    • Label: Sono Luminus
    • UPC/Barcode: 053479225924
    • Item Number: DSL-92259