15 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Two other popular instrumental acts come to mind when hearing 2CELLOS' self-titled debut. Like ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, 2CELLOS interpret popular modern songs usually not associated with their instruments, which are sometimes manipulated through effects. And like flamenco rockers Gabriela y Rodrigo, cellists Stjepan Hauser and Luka Sulic frequently take up complementary roles, utilizing separate playing techniques. The classically trained Croatian pair first teamed up for a homemade recording of Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal,” presented in rerecorded form here along with the King of Pop’s more mellow “Human Nature.” Two other artists are represented twice: U2 (with the opener “Where the Streets Have No Name” and the closer “With or Without You”) and Sting (with “Fragile” and the bonus track “Fields of Gold”). “Misirlou” (heard in Pulp Fiction) is brought back to its Greek folk-dancing roots, while on Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt,” haunting legato contrasts with ghostly pizzicato playing.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Two other popular instrumental acts come to mind when hearing 2CELLOS' self-titled debut. Like ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, 2CELLOS interpret popular modern songs usually not associated with their instruments, which are sometimes manipulated through effects. And like flamenco rockers Gabriela y Rodrigo, cellists Stjepan Hauser and Luka Sulic frequently take up complementary roles, utilizing separate playing techniques. The classically trained Croatian pair first teamed up for a homemade recording of Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal,” presented in rerecorded form here along with the King of Pop’s more mellow “Human Nature.” Two other artists are represented twice: U2 (with the opener “Where the Streets Have No Name” and the closer “With or Without You”) and Sting (with “Fragile” and the bonus track “Fields of Gold”). “Misirlou” (heard in Pulp Fiction) is brought back to its Greek folk-dancing roots, while on Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt,” haunting legato contrasts with ghostly pizzicato playing.

TITLE TIME
14
15

About 2CELLOS

Crafty, Croatian cello duo 2Cellos first garnered public attention after uploading a cello-only cover of Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" to YouTube. Formed by longtime friends and seasoned players Luka Sulic and Stjepan Hauser, the pair inked a deal with Sony Masterworks in 2010 and released their eponymous debut album the following year, which featured cello-centric covers of tracks from the likes of U2 ("Where the Streets Have No Name"), Kings of Leon ("Use Somebody"), and Nine Inch Nails ("Hurt"), as well as a new version of the Michael Jackson track that helped launch their pop careers. It reached number one on the Billboard Classical Albums chart.

In2ition, released in 2013, mined the same pop/rock territory, with highlights arriving via classical crossover takes on songs from AC/DC ("Highway to Hell") and Coldplay ("Clocks"), and the Šulić and Hauser original, "Orient Express." The duo's third studio album, 2015's Celloverse, included spirited takes on Iron Maiden's "The Trooper," AC/DC's "Thunderstruck," and Mumford & Sons' "I Will Wait." 2Cellos next went to the movies with 2017's Score, including material from film and television (among others, Game of Thrones, Titanic, Chariots of Fire, Braveheart, and The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring). A collaboration with the London Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor and arranger Robin Smith, it became their fourth straight appearance in the Billboard 200 and their third classical number one. ~ James Christopher Monger

ORIGIN
Zagreb, Croatia
FORMED
2011

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