Rudolf Moser | Spielmusik

This new production originated at the initiative of the Musik-Akademie der Stadt Basel. It draws our attention to a significant composer and will keep his name from unjustly falling into oblivion. A biography by Hanns Buchli published in 1964, a few years after Moser's death, contains a typical characterization of his music that was printed in a local Freiburg daily: "Moser is one of the few Reger pupils who braved the power of this giant and did not abandon himself to epigonism. His predominant trait is an outpouring of lyrical sensitivity and, in his music, he reacts to the gentlest and most intimate stimuli. All experimentation with constructions concocted purely in the mind was foreign to him. Borne by an indomitable formative will, he rounded everything off seamlessly on his way to perfection. Moser never gave in to fashionable trends. His inner powers of development grew from work to work and found new expressive means. Yet he deliberately avoided the dazzle and splendor of the instrumental idiom." Moser was also a lieder composer with a distinctively personal style. He was the born lyricist, who possessed a particularly subtle sense of intimate effects. While never becoming precious, his harmony is carefully chosen to bring out the softest emotional tones; his melodies are striking, yet artless and inward. The melodic line, which often proceeds from a folkloric idea, rises soulfully above a rigorously economical piano part. - He was often accused of looking to the past; his critics cited his longing for Bach, whom he revered above all. But this is unjust. To be sure, he borrowed old forms, but interpreted them in his own way. […] He used church modes not to revive any bygone Middle Ages, but because major and minor were too limiting; he needed them to expand his tonal range, like another would use the 12-tone scale…