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Elgar's Enigma variation (No 9) -- Nimrod [listen -- track 7, 1:17-2:39] is second on my list of personal favorites. For Miller, the preponderant evocation here is image and sensation of the Wiltshire countryside where he, presumably, worked on the CD. This was such a predominant thought for Miller, it seems, that he charmingly put a thank you to 'the English countryside in spring' on his list of credits in the CD booklet. 'There is no composer who translates this beauty and tranquillity better into music than Elgar,' Miller writes. 'His harmonies and melodies are so visual.'

There are plenty others worth listening to: Beethoven, Satie, Bach. Of Bach, Miller somewhat unconventionally states: 'If Bach were alive today, I have no doubt he would be the pop genius of out time. Nothing illustrates this better than the opening chords of the Ciaccona.' Writing about his own, brilliant arrangement of Prelude No 3 for Clavier, Miller goes on with his Bach observations: 'It's a keyboard study that Bach wrote for his eldest son (William Friedemann) as an exercise when he was ten. Being a father myself, I can hear he must have loved his son very much. It's in the harmony.'

From the writings on his website, maintained for his ever-growing fan community, Miller comes across as possessing that rare modest kindness which sometimes goes hand in hand with true genius, when an artist concedes his art comes through but not from him and sees himself as a channel for something greater, a mere instrument for beauty, his every creation a parturition touching on various regions of perfection that history reserves for a select few. Of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, the final track, Miller says: 'While I was recording this, the chords and melody seemed to play themselves, which made me feel in the presence of greatness.'

Copyright © 10 August 2004 Tess Crebbin, Germany


Dominic Miller - Shapes

475 479-2 DDD Stereo NEW RELEASE 48'12" 2004 Decca Music Group Ltd

Dominic Miller, guitar; Placido Domingo, tenor; Alejandro Lerner, voice; Gordon Sumner, voice; Chris Botti, trumpet; Pino Palladino, bass; Jason Rebello, piano; Miles Bould, percussion; Richard Cottle, keyboards and programming; Rufus Miller, guitar; Marianna Pleszkan, cello; James Banbury, cello, keyboards and programming; Nick Patrick, percussion

Bach, arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Qui tollis (Mass in B minor); Albinoni/Giazotto arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Adagio in G minor; Gordon Sumner/Miller: Shape of my heart; Bach arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: 'Air on a G string' (Orchestral Suite No 3); Bach arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Presto (Violin Partita in G minor); Schubert arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Ave Maria; Elgar: 'Nimrod' (Variations on an original theme); Satie arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Gymnopédie No 1; Ariel Ramirez: Kyrie (Misa Criolla); Bach arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman, Lerner: 'Mi Fe'; Bach arr Miller, Patrick: Prelude No 3 for Clavier; Beethoven arr Miller, Patrick, Ingman: Piano Sonata No 14 'Moonlight'






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