Metallic Violins, The


by Matthew Hindson

'Violinists James Cuddeford and Natsuko Yoshimoto were a regularly performing duo until career demands took them in different directions. Yoshimoto is now concertmaster of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and Cuddeford plays with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta and Sydney's Ensemble Offspring. However, a lasting testament to their work together is this recording of nine new compositions by Australian composers. Most of the composers represented, including Matthew Hindson, Roger Smalley, Elena Kats-Chernin and Andrew Ford, wrote their pieces especially for these players. Hindson's Metallic Violins is the fun, flamboyant showpiece of the collection. It borrows the technique of "shredding'' from heavy metal, in which guitar solos are played at breakneck speed. Stagy sliding and scratchy effects on both violins emulate an electric guitar in full flight. But what makes this piece work so well is the sumptuous finesse Cuddeford and Yoshimoto bring to it: they give it all the refinement of a Bach partita… Throughout, the playing is extraordinarily polished. The Australian (Graham Strahle), 27 March 2010 The Metallic Violins ‘In typical Hindson style, the work was an exuberant exploration of the influence of heavy metal music, with the performers trading blows in true rock’n’roll fashion… The persistent energy of the writing gave the work an intrinsic momentum…’ (Janet McKay), 22 May 2008

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