… Mika Sasaki strikes a happy medium between sensitivity of phrasing and boldness of attack. Her tone is rich and full with a wide range of dynamics and a judicious use of pedal.[Max Grafe’s Obsidian Liturgy is] to my ears the highlight of this album. The adventurous quality of the composition has some affinity to Robert Schumann, who has always been noted for his unexpected turns of phrase and emotional outbursts, although Grafe definitely has his own style. One might best describe it as “modernistic Romanticism,” as it is filled with an almost explosive outpouring of emotion yet is contained in a vessel of bitonality. What impressed me most, however, was Grafe’s sense of structure: he never loses sight of where his music is going, mood shifts or no mood shifts, and his grasp of mood is equally outstanding.
Lynn René Bayley reviews for The Art Music Lounge, October 27th, 2016
Please enjoy the whole review.
Purchase Obsidian from Yarlung Records here.