• Soundset Recordings (map)
Much of Matthew Tommasini’s 9-minute Torn Canvases, which attempts to depict in sound the paintings of Jackson Pollack, reminds me of the bright, assertive minimalism of Michael Torke.
— Soundest Recordings

Review

Equilibrium 119 offers selections by wind ensembles of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. The school has not only a select wind ensemble but an even more select Casella Sinfonietta, which (like professional ensembles) prepares for concerts with few rehearsals. The Sinfonietta plays most of this program. Much of Matthew Tommasini's 9-minute Torn Canvases, which attempts to depict in sound the paintings of Jackson Pollack, reminds me of the bright, assertive minimalism of Michael Torke. Joel Puckett says his 15-minute Southern Comforts (2008) is about fond memories of growing up in the South, and he gave three of the movements South-evoking titles. I can’t detect anything in the music that relates to those titles ('Faulkner', ‘Ritual: Football and the Lord’, ‘Mint Julep’), but no matter--it’s an excellent, dissonant work for solo violin (superbly played by Marjorie Bagley), winds, brass, piano, and percussion.