Martin Butler: Dirty Beasts

Martin Butler: Dirty Beasts

NMC Recordings
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"It's true!" I cried. "I swear it, mummy! There is a person in my tummy!" The Tummy Beast

The title track Dirty Beasts, for speaker, piano, and wind quintet, is a deliciously gruesome but immediately accessible work which sets three verses from Roald Dahl's hilarious collection of poems. Narrator Simon Callow brings to life the stories of the Crocodile, Tummy Beast and Pig with a variety of gloriously ebullient regional accents, while Martin Butler's playfully evocative music is wonderfully realised by the New London Chamber Ensemble.

Martin's music is lyrical and strongly infl uenced by dance form, rhythms, jazz and improvisation. Rondes d'Automne for small ensemble explores the playing styles, textures and modal harmonies of American folk music. Fall for flute and piano and Lovesongs Waltzes for clarinet and piano have hints of delicate jazz and dance rhythms.

Composer-pianist Martin Butler performs two solo works on this album: Rumba Machine – a virtuosic fanfare-like piece – and Prelude Inégales, exploring ways in which material that has its roots in improvisation can be captured and worked on in more formal and strategic compositional ways.


Simon Callow narrator
New London Chamber Ensemble
Leon Bosch
double bass
members of the Navarra String Quartet
Martin Butler piano