Athens Guitar Duo – Recuerdos: music by Piazzolla, de Falla, Johannes Möller, Cody Brookshire Label: Claudio Records – CR60372 DVD-A high resolution audio (192 kHz / 24-bit, 96 kHz / 24-bit PCM) (1/6/17) TT:60:23 ***:

Based in Athens, Georgia, the Grammy-nominated Athens Guitar Duo consists of Dusty Woodruff and Matthew Anderson, who have opened up the world of the guitar to new audiences and have promoted both modern and traditional composers with great success in concert and now with their second collection of music on disc. The high resolution CD reviewed here,  Recuerdos (“memories”) features tangos and guitar works by Piazzolla, de Falla, Johannes Möller, Cody Brookshire and others.

The works here are a nice collection of Spanish guitar music, along with works by an American (Cody Brookshire), Finnish (Pehr Nordgren) and Swedish composer (Johannes Möller).

The recording is in stereo, but the disc is a DVD-Audio format, a pretty much abandoned way to distribute music. The disc will play on any DVD player, because the stereo track is in the PCM format which is how DVD movies were mastered. It’s certainly an OK way to distribute this music, but many might have preferred a Blu-ray audio disc which seems to be the ‘normal’ way high resolution recordings find their way to disc.  (It is also available as a CD or through digital downloads or streaming.)

At any rate, the sound is fine. The soloists each get their own speaker, left or right, and their playing is excellent. This disc is stereo only, so no surround.

I especially appreciated that these were not the ‘typical’ selections often found on classical guitar performances, but rather a nice compendium of lesser heard music for guitar.

Track Listing:
1 Recuerdos de la Alhambra (Arr. J. Sagreras) (Francisco Tarrega)
2 When Buds Are Breaking (Johannes Moller)

Tango Suite (Astor Piazzolla)
3 Tango Suite: Tango No. 1: Allegro
4 Tango Suite: Tango No. 2: Andante rubato
5 Tango Suite: Tango No. 3: Allegro

Prism (Cody Brookshire)
6 Prism: I. Refractions
7 Prism: II. A Chilling Effect
8 Prism: III. Bullrun Toccata

9 El sombrero de tres picos, G. 53, Pt. 2: The Miller’s Dance (arr. for guitar duo)

Portraits of Country Fiddlers, Op. 26 (Arr. D. Woodruff) (Pehr Henrik Nordgren)
10 Portraits of Country Fiddlers, Op. 26 (Arr. D. Woodruff): II. Tuumsi Tuumsikelija (The Thinker)
11 Portraits of Country Fiddlers, Op. 26 (Arr. D. Woodruff)