21 Songs, 1 Hour 8 Minutes


Ratings and Reviews

4.1 out of 5
8 Ratings
8 Ratings

An Interesting, Relaxing Look at Classical

Forever Game

While many know the Kronos Quartet from “Requiem for a Dream,” this is a very different experience from the electronic influenced orchestration. I don’t know a lot about the artists themselves, but I can tell you this is a Classical album with a modern touch and a dark twist that gives the music a slightly ominous undertow. It is relaxing and fairly engaging, but if you’re too engaged and not a huge fan of classical it may seem a little repetitious. I enjoyed the album. And I have a new love for some classical I once looked past.

Interesting concept that almost works


The Kronos try to bridge the gap and break down some biases we have about new music. Not every selection works but they manage to blur the distiction between early and new music. Even some friends who are music buffs even had trouble identifying what period they were listening to at times. They manage to achieve a fairly authentic viol sound when it was required. Ben Johnston, a composer I admire, did however fail to make a convincing transcription of Partch's greek studies. All things considered it was still a worthwhile album.

About Kronos Quartet

Since their founding in 1973, Kronos Quartet have become the foremost ambassador of contemporary chamber music, determined and successful at breaking down barriers between musical genres and between musicians and audiences.

David Harrington, the ensemble's founder and first violinist, was inspired to form the group after hearing George Crumb's Black Angels. By the end of the 1970s, Kronos settled into a tight collaboration between Harrington, violinist John Sherba, violist Hank Dutt, and cellist Joan Jeanrenaud, and found a home base in San Francisco, California. At an early point, that initial musical inspiration and the audience reception at their performances led Kronos to devote themselves entirely to contemporary music and to present their music in a more relaxed environment than found at typical chamber music recitals.

As of 2010, the Quartet had commissioned more than 700 works and arrangements, not just for string quartet, but also for quartet plus other performers and even other sound sources. Kronos have had a particularly close working relationship with Terry Riley. In 2002, NASA commissioned Riley to write Sun Rings for Kronos, featuring sounds and images recorded by NASA instruments throughout the solar system. Other longstanding partnerships developed between Kronos and composers Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Henryk Górecki, Osvaldo Golijov, and Franghiz Ali-Zadeh.

Kronos' first big album was 1987's White Man Sleeps, and their 1989 recording of Reich's Different Trains won a Grammy for Best Contemporary Composition. Many of Kronos' other recordings have spent weeks at the top of Billboard's Classical Chart, with 2002's Nuevo nominated for both a Grammy and a Latin Grammy, and 2003's recording of Berg's Lyric Suite winning another Grammy for the ensemble. Kronos' recordings reflect their broad interests in jazz, world music, young composers, and film. In performance, they are just as catholic in their venues and collaborations, even working with several choreographers and multimedia artists.

In 1999, Jeanrenaud left the Quartet, and Jennifer Culp stepped in as the cellist. Culp left in 2005 following the recording of You've Stolen My Heart - Songs from R.D. Burman's Bollywood, and was replaced by Jeffrey Zeigler. Personnel changes aside, Kronos Quartet continue to appeal to an eclectic mix of listeners and to receive high praise for their championship of unique music. In 2011, just after the release of Uniko, a collaboration with accordionist Kimmo Pohjonen and sampling artist Samuli Kosminen, it was announced that Kronos had received both the Avery Fisher Prize (U.S.) and the Polar Music Prize (Sweden) for their exceptional achievements. Following concerts in New York and London to celebrate Nonesuch's 40th anniversary with labelmates Oliver Chaney, Rhiannon Giddens, Natalie Merchant, and Sam Amidon, the quartet regrouped with their collaborators to record an album. Folk Songs was released in 2017, and featured a number of traditional compositions with contemporary arrangements. The following year saw the release of Landfall, a collaboration with Laurie Anderson inspired by the latter's experience with Hurricane Sandy. ~ Patsy Morita

Seattle, WA




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