Violinist Rachel Barton Pine.

In Tuesday’s (1/2) Classical Voice North America, Richard S. Ginell writes, “How can one possibly associate Dmitri Shostakovich with heavy metal rock?… Enter Rachel Barton Pine, virtuoso violinist and self-admitted passionate metalhead, who tries to have it both ways, though without plugging in. She commissioned a violin concerto from fellow violinist-metal fan Earl Maneein called Dependent Arising that apparently aims to translate heavy-metal mannerisms into symphonic terms. Then she coupled it with Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1, which was famously shelved for seven years as long as Stalin was alive and dangerous … In the Shostakovich, Pine is full of steady, exquisitely controlled melancholy in the opening movement … saving up high tension for the later portion of the cadenza and the rigors of the steeplechase finale…. Tito Muñoz—[music director] with the Phoenix Symphony—does a capable job with the pointed rhythms of the Scherzo with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. On to the Maneein concerto, in which Pine comes out firing as dissonances in the orchestra pile up at the start of the opening movement…. There is a high-strung cadenza in which Pine crunches down on the strings, sawing wildly, followed by a rat-a-tat-tat coda with mayhem from everyone…. Finally, rapid quasi-metallic tremolos power the concerto toward its close.”