Music for Brass Septet 5 – Fauré, Debussy and Ravel – is released today!
Our latest recording has been quite a long time coming – we actually recorded it 2 years ago in November 2015. Hopefully you’ll think it’s worth the wait – we certainly enjoyed recording it, and this music has proved to be a fantastic addition to our concert repertoire over the past two years.
Our recordings generally focus on a specific period and group of composers, and this allows us to spend lot of time really getting into a particular style. The incredible music on this disc presented some challenges: lots of it is piano music, which is always tricky. The effect of the sustain pedal is a very difficult thing to imitate on other instruments. Perhaps more significantly though, we have to reproduce the work of a single pianist using seven individual musicians. This means that it is incredibly important that we’re all exactly of one mind musically, especially in music like this that requires a lot of rubato – the ebb and flow that a pianist would naturally give to the music. We have to take great care in the arrangements and in rehearsal to make sure that we have a united musical intention. Luckily Septura’s members have honed their chamber music skills – the most important of which is listening – over many years, and so progress is always pretty speedy.
Septura’s players are also all active as soloists, and so it was great to be able to feature a lot of them on this disc as soloists in various Fauré songs. We believe that brass instruments are fundamentally vocal in nature, and so these mélodies seemed to be a natural fit. Even so, it’s a great challenge to pull off convincing renditions of some of Fauré’s best-known songs. Although we’ve stripped the originals of their texts, our aim is always to retain all of the nuance and colour, and most importantly to capture the musical essence.
This recording was made possible thanks to funding from the Rayne Trust, and supported by B&S as part of Buffet Crampon.