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Henry Fogel
Fanfare, November 2020

The performance here is, in a word, phenomenal. Soprano Anu Komsi masters the very wide range and manages to differentiate between the six characters portrayed (three accusers and three defendants). It is a virtuoso achievement.

Hannu Lintu and the Finnish Radio Orchestra seem deeply committed to the music, playing with abandon as well as technical security. This is an easy recommendation to anyone interested in the music being composed today. © 2020 Fanfare Read complete review

Allen Gimbel
American Record Guide, September 2020

The music is lush and overpowering. Ms Komsi’s extraordinary coloratura must manage three languages and contrasting persona as their interrogators—and she covers 2-1/2 octaves with no perceptible difficulty.

2 Episodes is for orchestra alone. These are also erotically heated and stylistically along the same lines. The Finnish Radio Orchestra has complete control of the brilliant orchestral writing. © 2020 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Andrew Mellor
Gramophone, August 2020

…She is in strong, agile voice and can do special things, not least in her [Komsi] final utterance.

…Beyond the different and more pronounced gait of those rhythms, but that doesn’t stop the music thrilling in that pulverising Lindberg way, with every part of the orchestra, top to bottom, part of the argument. Lintu’s Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra is, yet again, on eye-widening form. © 2020 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Stephen Barber
MusicWeb International, July 2020

I find the Finnish composer Magnus Lindberg one of the most exciting composers working today. His music, to put it simply, sounds marvellous. There is a glitter and sparkle about his orchestral works which reminds me of Mozart, with splendid fanfares for the upper brass and great skirling passages for the wind and strings and surging harmonies for the lower brass.

The conductor Hannu Lintu and his orchestra have a good track record with Lindberg’s music: this is the third disc of his music that they have made. The singer, Anu Komsi, who sings Accused here, has apparently performed it a number of times. She has a lovely voice… © 2020 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Pamela Margles
The WholeNote, July 2020

All six roles are sung with relentless theatricality by the virtuosic soprano Anu Komsi. 

The versatile Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, led by Hannu Lintu, gives a dynamic account of the dangers lurking beneath the ominous orchestral textures. But there is hope—in the resilient pizzicato strings, the defiant brass fanfares, and, at the end, the sublime vocalise with the soprano abandoning words altogether. It’s a brilliant coup de théâtre.

Lindberg wrote Accused in 2014, but its timeliness is uncanny. Here it has been effectively paired with Lindberg’s inventive Two Episodes, written two years later. Fortunately, texts and translations are included. © 2020 The WholeNote Read complete review

Kevin Filipski
The Flip Side, May 2020

Soprano Anu Komsi rivets throughout this challenging dramatic showcase that runs nearly 40 minutes. Lindberg’s Two Episodes, inspired by Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, is an attractive ensemble piece that highlights the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra under conductor Hannu Lintu, both of which also provide strong support in Accused. © 2020 The Flip Side Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, May 2020

Magnus Lindberg was a founder member of Ears Open Society, a group of Finnish composers who, in the 1980’s, encouraged an awareness in mainstream modernism.

It was in the later years of the decade that he composed a group of orchestral works establishing his international reputation among today’s leading creative musical voices. Having been a pupil of Einojuhani Rautavaara, he had in his younger years joined others in creating the style of free tonality that readily slips between tonality and atonality. That was taken one stage further by Lindberg who gives us a convoluted stage in melodic exploration that we hear in the vocal role of his extended 2014 song cycle, Accused. Setting texts in French, German and English, two females and one male are being interrogated, the words taken from three actual events that took place in three different countries and at very different periods in history. For the soprano soloist it is an immense challenge, for not only is she singing continuously for almost forty minutes, but she has to convincingly change roles between the accuser and the accused. Then she has the task of singing in three languages, Lindberg presenting the last, and greatest trial in the high tessitura that he requires for extended passages. Whether the accused was guilty or not we are not told, but it hardly matters in this chilling scenario. There is nothing about the soloist, Anu Komsi, in the disc’s booklet, but I know her as one of Finland’s most dramatic coloratura sopranos in opera or on the concert stage, and she is here in fine form. The orchestra, with conductor Hannu Lintu conducting, grabs your attention in the dramatic opening bars of a hard-hitting score that is full of ever-changing colours, and it could not wish for more involved protagonists. The disc is completed by Two Episodes from 2016 scored for a Beethoven-sized orchestra and, in total contrast with Accused, it is a pleasing and readily attractive score. I presume they are both World Premiere recordings. © 2020 David’s Review Corner

Records International, May 2020

Lindberg nonetheless provides a very Beethovenian heft and momentum, a sense of being drawn inexorably into the orbit of the 9th, without ever trying to sound like or quote from Beethoven. The falling fifths motif from the opening of the first movement is a recurring gesture, but incorporated into a Lindberg soundscape; the language, in both works here, is Lindberg’s consistent but evolving ‘meta-tonal’ idiom in which harmonic progressions have the inevitability and directionality of tonal key relationships. © 2020 Records International Read complete review

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