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Escala

Escala

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Album Review

Escala, the classical crossover string quartet from the second season of Britain's Got Talent, worked with veteran English pop producer Trevor Horn on their eponymous album debut, a wide-ranging collection of cover material. Comprised of Tasya Hodges (cello), Izzy Johnston (violin), Chantal Leverton (viola), and Victoria Lyon (violin), the ladies bear a striking resemblance to another all-female classical crossover string quartet with ties to England, the commercial powerhouse Bond. In fact, there are several songs on Escala that have also been covered by Bond on one album or another: Karl Jenkins' "Palladio," Led Zeppelin's "Kashmir," Robert Miles' "Children," and Samuel Barber's "Adagio for Strings." The similarities between Escala and Bond are indeed too striking to overlook. While this might be a problem for classical crossover listeners looking for original music, it shouldn't be a problem for Bond fans who don't mind more of the same. Escala were finalists on Britain's Got Talent in 2008, after all, and they perform a wide-ranging collection of cover material on their debut album. "Palladio" and "Live and Let Die," two of the songs that Escala performed live on Britain's Got Talent, show up here in new arrangements. The version of "Kashmir" is unique in that it features Slash of Guns N' Roses on guitar. Also familiar is "Requiem for a Tower," a version of "Lux Aeterna" from the film Requiem for a Dream (2000) that was repurposed for the Lord of the Rings film trilogy. The remaining material ranges from George Frederick Handel's "Sarabande" to Ennio Morricone's "Chi Mai," and though some of it borders on obscurity, none of the material is original. Actually, there's not much original about Escala. They're good at what they do, but they don't do anything special that hasn't been done before, neither their style nor the material they cover.

Customer Reviews

I really like this group.

So, I didn't give them 5 stars because they aren't original, but for a classical music lover like myself, they are great to me. Unlike Bond, who sounds extremely overprocessed, Escala seems to really let the instruments shine. While they do use heavy percussion and some mixing it doesn't interfere with the string arrangements. It's all a matter of preference; given the choice I'd listen to Escala over Bond.

Amazing!

I am so pleased with the release of this album. The music is beautiful, and extremely well arranged. It is everything one could hope for, and more! The album is home to a variety of musical diversity, and will keep your attention. Overall, this album is quite impressive, and I look forward to their future work. Definitely a must have!

Excellent Debut

Escala, who made it to the finals in Britain's Got Talent, shows just how well they can play music in their debut album. They take music of the classical genre and manage to modernize it a bit, which is shown in songs like Children and Palladio. If you liked their music on Britain's Got Talent, you can't go wrong with this album.

Biography

Genre: Classical

Years Active: '00s

A British classical crossover string quartet similar in style to Bond, Escala made their album debut in 2009 after garnering fame on the television show Britain's Got Talent. Based in London, the quartet is comprised of Tasya Hodges (cello), Izzy Johnston (violin), Chantal Leverton (viola), and Victoria Lyon (violin). Prior to the founding of Escala, Johnston and Leverton were group members of Wild, a classical crossover quintet that released one album, Time (2005), and was likewise often compared...
Full Bio
Escala, Escala
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Customer Ratings

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