The Enchanted Loom: Orchestral Works by Carl Vine
One day, early on in my musical studies, I was handed a work by a contemporary Australian composer. The music looked black on the page and terrified teenage me, having never heard of this person. But then I saw the work performed live, fell in love with it and everything else that has ever been written by Carl Vine.
This album is the premiere recording of Vine’s latest symphony, titled The Enchanted Loom. For those who are counting, this is his Symphony No. 8, but it is so much more besides. It’s described as ‘a 25-minute exploration in music of the intricate patterns of the human brain as it weaves together from raw sensory data our understanding of the outside world’. The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (MSO) frequently collaborate with Vine, and this work was commissioned when he was their Resident Composer in 2018.
Also included on the album are Vine’s bright MicroSymphony (Symphony No. 1), along with his Concerto for Orchestra and a fanfare simply titled ‘V’, in reference to the five minutes it takes to perform. These are all live recordings from the MSO in their home at Hamer Hall, and you can feel the comfort in the way they navigate the rhythmic patterns, then fuse and unravel the harmonic ideas. The year 2018 feels like a long time ago, but this album has been worth the wait.