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George Adams
American Record Guide, September 2017

Ole Buck’s collection of sinfonietta works span a period of a decade and a half, showing a notable stylistic consistency. His music can be dark and somber, yet full of life—insistent and fearlessly repetitive with growth and intensity. To call him a “minimalist” feels right but also indexes some cliched generic markers that don’t apply. Things are far more fluid and free than they are in, say, Glass or Reich, with a real flexibility of orchestration, phrasing, and, perhaps most important, form. Fiori di Ghiaccio sees an emergence or awakening in the opening minutes, driven by pulsing, bubbling, rocking thirds in the strings. Over the course of the record, these murmuring strings turn to blaring brass, floating woodwind chords, and stormy percussion. Harmonies are often dissonant, but in a way that adds colors and flavor to triadic tonality, rather than abolishing it. If there is such a thing as “minimalism” without any sense of stasis, then Buck achieves it here. © 2017 American Record Guide

Robert Markow
Fanfare, July 2017

Buck’s music, much like that of Arvo Pärt, is utterly soothing, calming, almost hypnotic in its effect.

Performances and sound are outstanding. © 2017 Fanfare Read complete review

David Hurwitz, February 2017

If you don’t know Danish composer Ole Buck, you’ve been missing something special. His music is approachable, imaginative, often nature-inspired, and crafted with remarkable precision. Each of these pieces is written for a different number of instruments or players, and each of them matters. Buck is a master of musical timing. In Fiori di ghiaccio (Ice Flowers), for example, just when you think all nine players have made a contribution, in comes a trumpet injecting a new flash of color (and melody).

The performances sound totally at home with the idiom; the players clearly relish their solo opportunities, and conductor Jesper Nordin has a good feel for the music’s carefully gauged pacing. Great sound, and just a great disc. © 2017 Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, July 2016

Though he has been active as a composer for over fifty years, Ole Buck remains little known in the international world, though much admired by his contemporaries. Born in Denmark in 1945, Buck became a composition pupil of Per Nørgård at the Aarhus Academy of Music, initially working in the world related to atonality with the Second Viennese School somewhere in its distant past. In more recent times, he has embraced a simplicity seemingly from a lifestyle deep into the countryside, and it would be convenient to describe his music from the period 1996 to 2010, as taking its parentage from Minimalism, though Buck would wish to call it his ‘New Simplicity’. As you traverse works that seeks beauty in its unhurried expressivity you may find very little that will remain in the memory, but his style is a very recognisable and generates a feeling of peace and contentment. That is particularly evident in the meditation surrounding A Tree, the tree’s longevity of life reflected in a score that grows in complexity, the thirteen musicians adding their differing sonorities before arriving at a central explosion as Spring arrives. Untitled reflects his walk around an art gallery and its various untitled exhibits. Here you cannot fail to recognise the influence of Steve Reich. The disc’s most extended score, Flower Ornament Music, started out as a vignette, but the little flute solo that opens the work became so ingrained in Buck’s mind that it continued to grow until it involved seventeen instruments as it bursts into blossom, percussion instruments playing a key role. There is much here that will remind you of the musical world of John Adams. I take the performances at face value, the Dacapo sound quality a thing of beauty and clarity, and a release of importance among modern music. © 2016 David’s Review Corner

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