Sunday, May 25, 2008

Soundtrack to a pleasant day

Just a brief post whilst I mull over what to write here next...

Yesterday I had a rare day to myself. A day off from work following a very tough, exhausting week, and with Julie away for a few days I spent the day catching up on things at home, finishing that long post for this blog, clearing up a load of Cathnor business and sorting out the piles of CDs that every so often threaten to take over the town of Didcot.

Anyway, with the exception of a wander around the corner to the post office I spent the entire day alone indoors, and of course the day had a soundtrack... here it is for you, for no real reason really, other than to remind people that this is a blog, and blogs are supposed to be about the pointless events of the day aren't they?!

7.30AM Stravinsky - The Rite of Spring My internal body clock always wakes me early. On days like today I just reach out for the hi-fi remote and press play. Whatever I was playing the night before then plays, and if its something suitable to begin the day with it stays on, if not then I flick on Radio 4. Either way I invariably fall back to sleep for a couple of hours.

9AM - Luigi Nono - Fragmente-Still a diotima Breakfast of scrambled eggs and smoked salmon... (when you work for the company I do, meals are always good!) This Arditti recording of the Nono proved the perfect opener for a relaxing day.

10AM-11.30AM Asher - Ubeboet - Cell Memory (windsmeasure)
Helmut Lachenmann -- String Quartets (Kairos)

11.30AM At this point I went for the walk to the post office. I listened to the podcast of Friday night's edition of the hilarious Radio 4 programme News Quiz. Old ladies looking at me strange as I giggled to myself in the inevitable queue.

MiddayWhen I got home the first post of the day had arrived. (remember when this used to happen in the morning?) Lo and behold there's a copy of David Lacey and Paul Vogel's new album amongst the junk mail. I sat quietly and played it, taking the opportunity to spend time with it in a quiet house. I ended up playing it four times back to back. More about it soon, but its everything I knew it would be...

3.30PM- 7PM - Vanessa Rossetto - Misafridal (Music Appreciation)
Julien Skrobek - a rather nice demo he kindly sent me
Johannes Brahms - Klavierquintett (Maurizio Pollini on DG)
Phil Durrant - Sowari
(spotted this while putting CDs away and couldn't resist giving it a spin)
Olivia Block - Live set on 23Five CDR
Steve Roden - Live set on 23Five CDR

I stopped to make dinner at 7PM. (Roast pork with all the veg trimmings if you're interested!) This took over an hour, during which I had on Radio 4, mainly a pretty bad arts review programme. Opened a bottle of Pinot Grigio... had a bath with my plastic duck while it cooked...

8.30PM Gustav Mahler - 6th Symphony (Claudio Abbado with Mahler Youth Orchestra on DVD) On quiet days like this I've taken to sitting down to dinner with one of my collection of Mahler DVDs playing. A lovely evening meant the back door was open so flies buzzed around a bit, but a nice meal with a good wine (actually that bit is debatable) is often accompanied well by Mahler.

9.30-Midnight Discs 1 and 2 of the Sugimoto/Okura/Unami - Chamber Music Concerts Vol.1 box set I worked through these again before bed in preparation for this week's audition programme. As the wine level in the bottle went down so the music on this discs sounded better and better. I must say though that when I reached out for the hi-fi remote this morning with a bit of a thick head Sugimoto's somewhat austere Tom and Jerry didn't stay playing for long. There's a time and place for everything..!

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