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ZOFO CD provides perfect way to mark Terry Riley's 80th birthday

Important American composer terry Riley, who turns 80 June 24, is the focus of a new CD by ZOFO.

If you want to take note of Terry Riley's 80th birthday on June 24 -- and who doesn't? -- dive into a new CD from the piano team of Eva-Maria Zimmermann and Keisuke Nakagoshi, known as ZOFO. That's what I'm doing today.

The release from from the Sono Luminus label, "ZOFO Plays Terry Riley," provides more than an hour of extremely cool repertoire from the godfather of minimalism. There is a great deal more to Riley than his most famous work, "In C," and this collection of pieces written, or arranged, for one piano-four hands provides one fascinating example after another.

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ZOFO deliversthe recital with technical elan and expressive spontaneity. The disc would be worth hearing if only for the kinetic, even giddy "Praying Mantis Rag," written for these pianists.

All in all, an engaging celebration of one of the country's most significant, richly inventive composers.

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