Adrian Williams – Images of a Mind

Like Britten, [Williams] uses the cello’s expressive palette to the full: slap pizzicato, stopped harmonics, scurrying sul ponticello – the works. Williams’s cello music is fortunate to have such a convincing champion as Wallfisch, technically expert enough to meet its considerable demands, and able to adapt his tone to its myriad mood shifts.

Janet Banks – BBC Music Magazine

Call me cynical, hard-bitten or whatever, but usually I wouldn’t expect to be gripped quite so deeply by new works from a comparatively little-known British contemporary composer, though Adrian Williams’s (b.1956) music certainly hits the spot decisively throughout this excellent disc. The late Sir John Betjeman wrote of Williams “I can imagine him on those hills plucking sounds from the air”. And indeed, after hearing this disc, it’s easy to appreciate the composer’s own observation that “my inspirational catalyst is the nearness to open spaces, to physical place and landscape…” Williams himself partners cellist Raphael Wallfisch in his Spring Requiem, Quatre Cantilenes and Images of a Mind. These are highly communicative and spontaneous works, most beautifully played and recorded. I found the solo cello sonata worked best, possibly because of its more regular and predictable structure, but these are impressive additions to the modern cello repertory. Highly recommended.

Michael Jameson – Classic CD