For those who like to stump their musical friends with the old guess-the-composer game, a good puzzler would be “Sea Piece With Birds.”
This 1952 orchestral work, some four minutes of somber, heaving music, is thick with chromatic chords that move in big parallel blocks, with skittish atonal themes mingling hesitantly above. The atmospheric orchestral colors suggest strangely updated Debussy. A frenetic climax sounds like some ornery blast of Varèse.
The performances here are accomplished and engrossing.