21st Century Oboe
Christopher Redgate & the Howarth-Redgate Oboe
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Electrifying oboe 

The Works: 


Roger Redgate: Concerto for Improvising Soloist and two Ensembles 

(two versions) 

David Gorton: Erinnerungsspiel and Schmeterlingsspiel 

Christopher Fox: Headlong and Broadway Boogie 

Michael Young: oboe_prosthesis (two versions) 

Edwin Roxburgh: '...at the still point of the turning world...' 

Matthew Wright: English Landscape Painting

Reviews of Electrifying Oboe:


Electrifying Oboe on Métier is a disc of experimental works for oboe (and sister instruments) by Roger Redgate, David Gorton, Christopher Fox, Edwin Roxburgh, Michael Young and Matthew Wright. Collaboration is very much the order of the day in all of these pieces bar one, with many options being left open to the performer and even to the accompanying group of turntable, laptop and electronics. The works are likely to be a shock to anyone with preconceived ideas about the instrument – just about every kind of extended technique is explored, the wacky accompaniments adding to the novelty.  The result, however, is highly engaging, though not, perhaps, quite as ‘new’ sounding as billed; the sound world is often reminiscent of Stockhausen or Ligeti’s electronic music of the late 50s.

Christian Morris


Christopher Redgate is rarely far from these pages, and his double CD Electrifying Oboe is also a tour de force while at the same time functioning as a self-contained, portable festival devoted to the instrument and new contexts within which it can operate.  The programme offers composition, improvisation, extended techniques, solo and ensemble performance, electronics and turntablism in an impressive selection of works with various collaborators and the wide-ranging excellence that results almost makes you wonder if Redgate has left himself with anything else to do(he will have of course).

Roger Thomas

Fanfare Magazine:

If all this wasn’t enough, music’s most forward-looking, technically mind-blowing oboist Christopher Redgate has recently released a double album titled Electrified Oboe, released on Metier. There’s a brace of works from both David Gorton & Christopher Fox; Fox is typically enigmatic, particularly in the curious & unsettling shifting regularity that underpins his work Headlong (for musette & square wave pulses), while Gorton’s Errinerungsspiel is really splendid, establishing a fascinating interplay between the soloist & live electronics; the drama in this latter piece is palpable, & its twists & turns yields more on repeated listenings. Edwin Roxburgh’s “…at the still point of the turning world…”, a piece i first encountered five years ago, continues to resist my attempts to get inside it, although its massive final tutti is as breathtaking as ever; Matthew Wright’s English Landscape Painting, on the other hand, is a superficial but rip-roaringly effective assault on the senses. Two works are performed twice on the album; in the case of Roger Redgate’s Concerto for Improvising Soloist and Two Ensembles, the differences are minimal—but the work is so amazingly exciting that it more than bears repeating—while Michael Young’s oboe_prosthesis, a piece heavily rooted in improvisation, positively benefits from dual interpretations. The first version features rapid figurations that are used to form a texture so dense that it feels impenetrable, & makes for a somewhat defeating listening experience; the second version couldn’t be more different: meditative, searching & rather beautiful. Anyone who’s ever heard Redgate’s playing knows how unbelievable it is, & throughout Electrified Oboe he demonstrates again & again why he’s the most celebrated oboist of our age.