From Impressionism to the present: Oskar Laznik and Tadej Horvat present a hundred years of music for saxophone and piano to their listening audience. “Légende” by their fellow Slovenian Lojze Lebič lends this debut album its title – and if the pieces are not yet legendary, then they will be – starting now, with this CD!
For what Laznik and Horvat have to offer makes us sit up and take listening notice. From folklore to the avant-garde, from Impressionism to the Neo-Baroque, an uncommonly colorful panorama spreads out and brings audible joy to the musicians – and not only to them! Things range far and wide in Hindemith’s Sonata (actually written for the alto horn), glisten and glow in Wijnand van Klavern’s delightful homage to Poulenc, and lament elegiacally in Yvan Markovich’s “Complaint” – it is only rarely that we have the opportunity to experience such great variety from the saxophone.
Most of the works qualify as genuine discoveries. Fernande Decruck’s Sonata in the remarkable key of C sharp major very much has earned a special place of its own among saxophone enthusiasts, and this recording has what it takes to add significant numbers of listeners to the Decruck fan mile. Lojze Lebič, who is now eighty—four years old, supplies an avant-garde piece; “Légende” calls for unusual playing style as well as the surmounting of intricately difficult rhythms and extreme dynamics.
All of this comes across particularly well in the three dimensions of this finely balanced Super Audio CD. How the two young artists, both of them now professors in their native Ljubljana, fill the room with saxophone music as it has never been heard before makes us eager for more – hats off!