Here is a collection of familiar classical music adagios given new interpretations by Windham Hill artists. Although most of the tracks do have synthesizer harmonies and embellishments, there are some that do not. The Brahms Intermezzo contains its own intermezzo in the form of a jazz piano trio improvisation. Edgar Meyer on double bass and Mike Marshall on mandolin perform a nice, straightforward transcription of the Prelude in C sharp minor from Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 2, with no synthesized embellishments. That prelude is not as widely known as the one Gounod used for his Ave Maria, also on this disc, performed by Paul McCandless on English horn and keyboards. Other highlights of the disc are the Bach Arioso performed by Thea Suits on flute and Tracy Silverman on violin and viola, and Steve Erquiaga's guitar transcription of Grieg's Nocturne. In both of these, the timbres of the instruments suit the music extremely well. The disappointments are the Adagio from Rodrigo's Fantasía para un gentilhombre reduced to a single piano melody with a minor-mode, haunting electric keyboard harmony, and Barber's Adagio for Strings, which seems to lose its profound feeling when reduced to just piano and synthesizer. The disc concludes with keyboardist Tim Story's take on the Largo from Vivaldi's Concerto for lute and 2 violins, RV 93. Overall, the disc makes a good accompaniment for some time spent "at rest," the literal translation of adagio.
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