New CD Genesis: Review in Limelight Magazine, Australia

Lisa MacKinney. Limelight Magazine, Australia ****

Debut recording from young Bulgarian is quite a smasher.

Genesis is the debut recording for Bulgarian/British composer Martin Georgiev, born in 1983 in Varna, Bulgaria, and based in London since 2005. His doctorate in composition was co-supervised by Peter Maxwell Davies and Harrison Birtwistle, during which period, Georgiev developed a sophisticated conceptual framework he calls ‘morphing modality’ borrowed from the idea of computer manipulation and image morphing, It’s no coincidence his works are visual and programmatic in nature.

Symphonic Triptych No 1 revolves around the suffering of Saint Sofia and her daughters, and incorporates the Orthodox chant in which Georgiev’s life and music is steeped. Monumental and explosive, it is also full of extraordinary delicacy, with some ethereal writing for strings and wind in the second movement. The other work presented here is his Percussion Concerto No 3 for marimba and orchestra, an unusual combination but in Georgiev’s hands a triumph: dramatic, textural and suffused in ancient Christian imagery and rhetoric.

Georgiev leads the Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra through his compositional landscape with an assured and steady hand, and marimba virtuoso Tatiana Koleva shines as the soloist. The recording is crisp and full, and presented with generously detailed liner notes. Georgiev’s is a bold, sophisticated compositional vision executed with brilliance.

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