Release Date: 28 June 2019
'It is incredibly rare to stumble across a virtually unknown or forgotten composer whose music genuinely excites and delivers, piece after piece. Erika Fox’s language is bold, feisty, uncompromising and astonishingly fresh. A highly distinctive style has emerged from a childhood suffused with music of Eastern European origin. Hasidic music, liturgical chant embellished with heterophony mingle with modal ancient melodic lines reminiscent of Eastern European folk music. She is a composer who is constantly energised by sound and its inexhaustible possibilities.' Kate Romano (Artistic Director of Goldfield Ensemble)
In the 1970s, Erika was actively involved with the Fires of London, the Nash Ensemble, Dartington, and the Society for the Promotion of New Music (SPNM). Between 1974 and 1994 her works were regularly performed at London's Southbank Centre, at major festivals and were regularly broadcast in the UK and abroad, but then it all stopped ...
We are delighted to bring her music to a new audience on this first commerical album at the age of 82, and have selected six chamber pieces spanning a 25 year period (1980 - 2005). They represent the depth and scope of Fox’s music and are a fine introduction to her extraordinary musical imagination.
Erika says 'I have always been interested in theatre and ritual, as a means of containing human drama within boundaries. Since my music owes almost nothing to Western musical tradition, and almost everything to my childhood memories of Jewish Liturgical chant and fragments of Hasidic melody, there is no harmonic development as such, rather single melodic lines, often in heterophony, held together by dint of varied repetition, and moulded, sometimes by use of percussion, to provide a ritualistic and perhaps theatrical whole.'
Bonus track: Kaleidoscope performed by Goldfield Ensemble. Available for FREE with all purchases of the Paths album. Also available separately here.
Richard Uttley piano
Richard Baker conductor
THE SUNDAY TIMES TOP 100 BEST ALBUMS OF 2019
THE DAFFODIL PERSPECTIVE'S TOP 10 CLASSICAL RECORDINGS OF 2019
'refreshingly unusual ... a ritual of untethered lines' Sunday Times
'Full of both kinds of extremes, emotionally and musically ... the music sings of traditions old and new and is utterly Erika Fox's own' BBC Radio 3
'An outstanding album of hitherto unknown music by British composer Erika Fox played by Goldfield Ensemble. Fox’s music is really fascinating and different…this album is a gem' Arts Music Lounge
'Distinctive, uncompromising, theatrical ... the performances are exemplary, bringing vivid colour and vibrancy to Erika Fox's striking aural world’ Planet Hugill ★★★★
'An intriguing introduction to the vivid soundworld of Erika Fox ... her moment, overdue, has at last come' Guardian
'One of the 20th and 21st century’s most significant compositional voices in this country ... all the music on this new album blazes with a dark fire' BBC Radio 3 Music Matters
'A distinctive and assured musical voice … The Goldfield Ensemble plays assuredly throughout, giving these underserved works excellent documentation. Now it is up to the rest of the musical world to take up Fox’s compelling music and make it much more widely known' Sequenza21
'Ben Goldscheider's horn-playing alone is a joy, particularly in the theatrical, improvisatory gestures of Quasi Una Cadenza ... there's much food here for the mind, the ears, plus the heart' BBC Music Magazine
'the blend of the elegiac and the abrasive is compelling, and very well conveyed by these performers in a recording that catches the evolving interactions of the ensemble with vivid immediacy' Gramophone
'Erika Fox is a real treasure and I recommend you hear this by all means!' Grego Applegate Edwards
'She has developed a flexible language, rooted in straight modernism but capable of multiple resonances' AllMusic
'the rediscovery of Fox's output will come as something of a breath of fresh air.' Records International
'modal melodies, vivid coloration and surprising dramatic flourishes with modernistic forms of coherence ... six lively and confidingly personal chamber works' The Wire
'The playing of the Goldfield Ensemble is consistently brilliant … an absolutely essential album containing music that should be heard by as many as possible.' Fanfare
All tracks recorded at Stapleford Granary, Cambridge on 24, 25 and 27 November 2018
DAVID LEFEBER Recording Engineer & Mastering
KATE ROMANO Producer & Artistic Director for Goldfield Productions
Catalogue number: NMC D254
Release Date: 28 June 2019