From Cuba With Love:
Sonidos Cubanos 2
(Neuma Records / June 18, 2021)
The work of five contemporary composers is featured on this new release from Neuma Records. Together, they illuminate the depths of compositional talent of artists of Cuban descent.
Flores Chaviano's NiFe is a sombre tone poem, an appropriately elegiac tribute to victims of a 1995 mining accident in Spain. Ivette Herryman Rodríguez's Memorial sets Chrstina Rossetti's poem 'When I am dead, my derest,' to music. It offers a gorgeous interplay between soprano, (Grammy-nominated soprano Lindsay Kesselman), piano and cello with drama and power. Odaline de la Martinez' Litanies is ominous and atmospheric, building subtley in layers of orchestral colour. Martinez is well known in London's music circles, particularly as a conductor, and the performance by ensemble Lontano is sensitive and expressive.
There are five excerpts from Sabrina Peña Young's Libertaria Song Cycle, all very brief, but nonetheless they tell a compelling story, from the fraught emotion of Mother Imagined to the angry exchange of Absolution.
Eduardo Morales-Caso's Evolving Spheres spotlights the bass clarinet in a duet with piano, showcasing the melodic and delightful sonority of the unusual instrumentation.
All the composers on Sonidos Cubanos 2 (the second in a Latin Grammy-nominated series) are recipients of the prestigious Cintas Foundation Fellowship that recognizes excellence among artists of Cuban descent. The collection is produced by noted composer Orlando Jacinto Garcia.