Maximus to Gloucester, Letter 27 (Withheld)
Label: Cantaloupe Music
Here, the house band of New York's Bang On A Can collective solicits pieces from composers in the contemporary classical world, including Steve Reich, that are based on field recordings (or videos with sound). How does the music work on its own? Sometimes fabulously! The highlights are Julia Wolfe's "Reeling," Florent Gyhs's John Cage-sampling "An Open Cage," Tyondai Braxton's madcap "Casino Trem," Bryce Dessner's Charles Olson-sampling "Maximus to Gloucester" and Anna Clyne's "A Wonderful Day." The other items are suitably atmospheric, but not quite as persuasive as audio-only enterprises.