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Víkingur Ólafsson - Reflections

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Reflections

Víkingur Ólafsson

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This album is something of an offshoot of pianist Vikingur Ólafsson's album Debussy/Rameau, which offered a deep and well-received dive into the relationship between those two composers. Here, Ólafsson offers manipulated performances of mostly Debussy, with a couple of works by Rameau and one Debussy improvisation by Ólafsson himself. Most of these manipulations are by electronic musicians, taking Ólafsson's own performances as a point of departure, but there are also low-fidelity recordings Ólafsson made at home during the coronavirus pandemic. These contain pedal and breathing noises that are substantial enough that the effect is beyond simply that of homemade recording. Ólafsson seems to be trying to create a kind of acoustic counterpart to electronic distortion and to weave it into the general mood he creates. Fans of Ólafsson's generally experimental approach will be interested in his latest explorations, which contain innovations in the interaction between classical performance and contemporary electronics, and the commercial success of this release suggests a continuing appetite for those explorations. Others, though, might start somewhere else with Ólafsson, who is undeniably a fresh voice. The home recordings for many will simply come off as sloppy and self-indulgent, and the electronics, while interesting, don't seem to make a coherent statement. This recording may be regarded as a footnote in the career of an artist who has genuinely new ideas that don't need the veneer of self-conscious experimentalism.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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Reflections

Víkingur Ólafsson

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Préludes / Book 2, L. 123 (Claude Debussy)

1
5. Bruyères (Home Session)
00:03:37

Claude Debussy, Composer - Christian Badzura, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2020 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

2
La damoiselle élue (Hania Rani Rework (After Claude Debussy))
00:05:07

Dirk Henning Niemeier, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Piotr Wieczorek, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hania Rani, Composer, Producer, Piano, Programming, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2020 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

3
10. Canope (Home Session)
00:03:49

Claude Debussy, Composer - Christian Badzura, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

4
Footsteps
00:03:37

Helgi Jonsson, Producer, Mixer, Vocals, Recording Engineer, Synthesizer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel, ComposerLyricist - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Helgi Jonsson

5
Badzura: Muse d'eau
00:03:34

Christian Badzura, Composer, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

6
L'entretien des muses (Hugar Rework (After Jean-Philippe Rameau))
00:05:26

Petur Jonsson, Producer, Mixer, Guitar, Percussion, Piano, Recording Engineer, Programming, Synthesizer Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Bergur Þórisson, Producer, Mixer, Percussion, Piano, Recording Engineer, Bass, Programming, Synthesizer Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Hugar, Composer, MainArtist

℗ 2021 Hugar

7
Badzura: K.A.H.D.
00:04:28

Tobias Lehmann, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Christian Badzura, Composer - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

8
Ólafsson: Reflection
00:05:34

Christian Badzura, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2020 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

Pour le piano, L. 95 (Claude Debussy)

9
1. Prélude
00:04:04

Claude Debussy, Composer - Christopher Tarnow, Producer, Mixer, Mastering Engineer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Róbert Steingrímsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Einar Valur Einarsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

10
2. Sarabande
00:05:20

Claude Debussy, Composer - Christopher Tarnow, Producer, Mixer, Mastering Engineer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Róbert Steingrímsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Einar Valur Einarsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

11
3. Toccata
00:04:01

Claude Debussy, Composer - Christopher Tarnow, Producer, Mixer, Mastering Engineer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Róbert Steingrímsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Einar Valur Einarsson, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

12
Drowned Haiku
00:04:06

CLARK, Composer, Producer, Mixer, Programming, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Steepgrass Limited

Préludes / Book 2, L. 123 (Claude Debussy)

13
10. Canope
00:03:53

Claude Debussy, Composer - Tobias Lehmann, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

14
La Cupis (Balmorhea Rework (After Jean-Philippe Rameau))
00:04:25

Rob Lowe, Guitar, Piano, Recording Engineer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Balmorhea, Composer, Producer, Mixer, MainArtist, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Michael A. Muller, Guitar, Recording Engineer, Programming, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - John Michael Landon, Mixer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 Balmorhea Music LLC

15
Badzura: K.A.H.D. (Home Session)
00:04:23

Christian Badzura, Composer, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

16
5. Bruyères
00:03:37

Claude Debussy, Composer - Tobias Lehmann, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Götz-Michael Rieth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2020 Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

Album Description

This album is something of an offshoot of pianist Vikingur Ólafsson's album Debussy/Rameau, which offered a deep and well-received dive into the relationship between those two composers. Here, Ólafsson offers manipulated performances of mostly Debussy, with a couple of works by Rameau and one Debussy improvisation by Ólafsson himself. Most of these manipulations are by electronic musicians, taking Ólafsson's own performances as a point of departure, but there are also low-fidelity recordings Ólafsson made at home during the coronavirus pandemic. These contain pedal and breathing noises that are substantial enough that the effect is beyond simply that of homemade recording. Ólafsson seems to be trying to create a kind of acoustic counterpart to electronic distortion and to weave it into the general mood he creates. Fans of Ólafsson's generally experimental approach will be interested in his latest explorations, which contain innovations in the interaction between classical performance and contemporary electronics, and the commercial success of this release suggests a continuing appetite for those explorations. Others, though, might start somewhere else with Ólafsson, who is undeniably a fresh voice. The home recordings for many will simply come off as sloppy and self-indulgent, and the electronics, while interesting, don't seem to make a coherent statement. This recording may be regarded as a footnote in the career of an artist who has genuinely new ideas that don't need the veneer of self-conscious experimentalism.
© James Manheim /TiVo

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