The Jewish Week

Gerald Cohen: “Generations” (CRI)

Review by George Robinson

Cohen is a young composer, only 41, with a sure ear for strong melodies. The instrumental pieces on this set, a trio for viola, cello and piano, and a string quartet, are sharply etched if somewhat derivative, echoing Diamond, Copland, maybe Bernstein. The setting of four Jewish texts has a nicely folkloric feel and is sung by the composer with authority. The suite from the Haggadah is deeply felt and thoughtful, although I have to confess a certain unease with the children’s choir that is the dominant element. Cohen is definitely a composer to be reckoned with. (Four-star review)