The Bal­lad of Read­ing Gaol by Jac­ques Ibert and Ork Records: New York, New York

Pasatiempo - - PASATIEMPO - Mid­sum­mer Night’s Dream. — James M. Keller A

Ork Records: New York,

New York (Numero Group) In 1975, Terry Ork, a vet­eran of Andy Warhol’s Fac­tory, es­tab­lished what is con­sid­ered the first punk record la­bel. With its owner’s pas­sion for the mu­sic at CBGB and in the Lower East Side, Ork Records re­leased the first 45s of Tele­vi­sion and Richard Hell, along with solo work by Big Star’s Alex Chilton, and much more. This past fall, Numero Group pack­aged high­lights of this la­bel with a gor­geous book and dropped it on the hol­i­day wish list of any­one who is into punk rock or New York City’s mu­sic history. Stretched across two CDs or four LPs, this is a rau­cous col­lec­tion of shaggy, en­er­getic mu­sic from a time when at­ti­tude trumped am­a­teurism — not that some of th­ese peo­ple didn’t have chops — and it is un­de­ni­ably the rock release of the year. The pro­duc­tion is ex­actly what you’d ex­pect from such a release; the gui­tars are grimy and the drums loud. The big­gest sur­prises here are ver­sions of songs that are shot through with a de­gree of adren­a­line that lis­ten­ers may not be used to, such as The Feel­ies’ barn-burn­ing take on their clas­sic “Fa Cé-La” or Richard Lloyd’s bois­ter­ous cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Get Off of My Cloud.” As rock mu­sic con­tin­ues to wane in main­stream cul­ture, this is a great re­minder of how pow­er­ful it is

when new waves of it come crash­ing in. — Robert Ker

JAC­QUES IBERT The Bal­lad of Read­ing Gaol (Naxos) Os­car Wilde’s poem “The Bal­lad of Read­ing Gaol” is well known to mu­sic afi­ciona­dos here­abouts since it served as in­spi­ra­tion for Os­car, the Wilde-cen­tered work Santa Fe Opera pre­miered in 2013. In 1921, Wilde’s pub­li­ca­tion had given rise to the first or­ches­tral work of Jac­ques Ibert, a three­move­ment sym­phonic poem of yearn­ing, cin­e­matic con­tours that he later said would prob­a­bly qual­ify as his “Op. 1” — al­though he did not ac­tu­ally as­sign opus num­bers to his works. An evoca­tive read­ing of the piece launches an all-Ibert CD from the Slo­vak Ra­dio Symphony Orchestra, di­rected by the au­to­di­dact Swiss con­duc­tor Adri­ano (one name only, like Drake or Adele). Ibert had clearly cut his teeth on De­bussy, and par­tic­u­larly on the opera Pel­léas et Mélisande, which keeps kib­itz­ing from the side­lines. From the same pe­riod comes his Trois pièces de bal­let (Les ren­con­tres), which is con­sid­er­ably more jolly and nods in­stead to Ravel’s La valse and Stravin­sky’s

Petrushka. The short tone poem Féerique (from au­tumn 1924) is a pleas­ing dis­cov­ery, sound­ing like a glis­ten­ing re­sponse to De­bussy’s faun but with a pass­ing kick from Gersh­win’s Rhap­sody in Blue, which had pre­miered seven months ear­lier. Ibert is most re­mem­bered for his neo-Re­nais­sance pieces, and a de­light­ful one in­hab­its nine tracks here: his Suite Elis­abéthaine (1942), con­sist­ing of mu­sic he wrote for a French pro­duc­tion of

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