Michael Kowalski

Michael Kowalski: Gringo Blaster

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This recording collects some of the compositions of Michael Kowalski, written from 1974 through 1994, a fertile period for the composer. The works are characterized by their eclecticism, as the pieces incorporate everything from piano mazurkas of Chopin to hip-hop and tango. The solo piano works performed by the composer are highly effective, as is the work for flute. The group tracks are not as engaging, particularly those performed by percussion, which sometimes lacks focus. The highlight is the title piece, "Gringo Blaster," which includes a somewhat dated rap solo, lots of percussion, and some interesting trombone and woodwind lines. The genre bashing is somewhat awkward throughout, though the composer appears comfortable incorporating a range of influences.

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