Carl Rütti: Organ Works

Carl Rütti

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Carl Rütti: Organ Works Review

by Uncle Dave Lewis

Swiss composer Carl Rütti is best known for his Requiem, which incorporates some elements of popular music and is one of only a few classical compositions outside of the minimalist school that makes effective use of electronic keyboards. Guild's Carl Rütti: Organ Works makes clear that Rütti is also a very good organist, combining registrations to produce colorful and interesting effects. The popular elements are also occasionally there; mainly funky or bluesy effects that worm their way into a texture gently reminiscent of the French modern organ tradition of Alain and Messiaen. The music and playing are good, but the sound of the Guild CD is unnecessarily bright and dry; it was recorded at the Collegiate Church St. Leodegar in Lucerne, and while the small hall does facilitate the audibility of very small and distant details, when the organ is going full bore it's over the top, and there isn't enough pedal in the recording to balance out the shrieking high end. Organ fanciers who have equipment flexible enough to redirect the equalization of the CD to some extent might well get something out of the music, which is intriguing, especially in light of the mainstream of European composition in Rütti's time; he is definitely going against the grain of it, though the term "traditional" does not apply to him at all. "Mystical" maybe; it's hard to really tell as the sound of parts of the disc is like being in a nightclub that's too loud and you just have to get out the door.

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