Album: Nico Muhly, Seeing Is Believing (Decca)

Click to follow

The American wunderkind's latest release focuses on linked commissions by the Aurora Orchestra, with Thomas Gould's acquisition of a six-string electric violin prompting the 25-minute title-track, a piece reflecting man's compulsion to map the heavens.

Brittle percussion and isolated woodwing "insect music" alternates with passages of pulsing minimalist figures akin to Reich and Adams, with other phrases bringing to mind the entire history of 20th-century American composition, from Ives and Copland through Bernstein. Alongside this and three other original pieces are Muhly's fascinating arrangements of 16th- century choral motets by Byrd and Gibbons for chamber ensemble.

DOWNLOAD THIS Seeing Is Believing; Miserere mei, Deus; Bow thine ear, O Lord