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Pensive Peter Salmon

Proof of Pudding


What discerning judges have said about The Coffee Story

'It's been a while since I read a first novel that felt as universally accomplished as Peter Salmon's The Coffee Story' - Toby Litt

'I was constantly intoxicated by a sense of desire & loss' - Jake Arnott

'Wild and raucous... an extraordinarily accomplished debut' - Niall Griffiths

'Reminiscent of Phillip Roth's Everyman. But it's much, much funnier' - Sydney Morning Herald

'An exceptional debut' - Martyn Bedford

Hard Sell

Wheels of Cheese #56: Illumina!

hipster mahler

Hipster Mahler, before he grew up.

‘Television,’ wrote the critic Clive Barnes, ‘is the first truly democratic culture … entirely governed by what the people want. The most terrifying thing is what people do want.’

Apparently, in classical music what people do want is a version of Ave Maria set to the tune of the Adagietto from Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. Now, I’m not saying it’s as bad as television, but crikey, it runs it close.

It’s the first track (billed helpfully as ‘the theme from Death in Venice) on the cd Illumina: Music of Light brought to you by the good people of New College Oxford, and it’s a stinker. If Mahler were alive today he’d be turning in his grave. They are pretty good singers, these dudes, to the extent that you can almost hear the apology in their voices as they stretch the hymn to fit the completely inappropriate tune, which itself contracts to try and meet the words halfway. I don’t think anyone should listen to this piece of music again, ever, and I’m pretty sure they won’t.

The rest of the cd features stuff like Benedictus: The Theme from Inspector Morse, so if you’re a fan of the show, look no further I guess. And on amazon they say the rest of the disc is ‘perfect for relaxation’. And you can’t ask for more than that, surely?

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