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Ken Cowan Plays Romantic Masterworks The 110-rank Schoenstein organ
Real freshness . . . brilliant, Reviews AAM Journal
by John Shaw Date Added: Monday 23 November, 2009
Sonic! Senuous! Superb!

[If you don't read this whole review, at least go to the last paragraph.]

I am so encouraged in the last couple of years to discover a younger generation of organ phenoms that are not only playing the organs of the world well, but indeed, seem to be reviving the very best of what organ playing is all about. In particular, these young artists are executing the 'standard literature' with great maturity of interpretation and understanding, but also, many of them are embracing literature, both from organ (and non-organ) compositions, that could best be described as 'symphonic' in nature.

Such is the case with organist, Ken Cowan, a young artist whose music-making stirs the very soul, releasing human expression through his playing such as we have not heard in more than a generation or two from the organ bench.

In that regard, I'd like to recommend the new recording on the wonderfully symphonic, Schoenstein Organ in Lincoln, NE (1997), which is called, "Ken Cowan Plays Romantic Masterworks'. You've simply must hear this outstanding playing and recording. He uses every wonderfully musical resource on the 110 rank Schoenstein to absolutely the best advantage in bringing off these great 19th century compositions. I truly believe the rendering of the Reubke 'Sonata, on Psalm 94' is one of the best ever recorded, showing its true symphonic character and deep passion of musical thought. It is a definitive match up of composer, performer, organ and engineering achievement. [Obviously, my humble opinion.]

Wait 'til you have your very breath taken away by the powerful tubas!

The basic reason one would come to want to put this CD in their player and commit to listening, would surely be of a desire to experience, in the highest sense of the phrase, true and unadulterated, soul-stirring music.

Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]

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