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Product Details

  • Performer: Frank; Alias Chamber Ensemble
  • Composer: Frank Gabriela Lena
  • Audio CD (Feb. 15 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Nam
  • ASIN: B004GX91W0
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #175,966 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Identity has always been at the center of Gabriela Lena Frank' music. Born in Berkeley, California, to a mother of mixed Peruvian/Chinese ancestry and a father of Lithuanian/Jewish descent, Frank explores her multicultural heritage most ardently through h

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9c8e5ad4) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c908f78) out of 5 stars "Hilos" Presents a Tapestry of Gabriela Frank's Music June 15 2011
By Digital Chips - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Gabriela Lena Frank is an up-and-coming composer who's really made a name for herself in the realm of chamber music. The latest collection of her work features four recent chamber compositions with a common theme. All, in some fashion, draw inspiration from Latin and South American music traditions.

It's an impressive recording. The CD starts with the title track, "Hilos" (Threads), a 2010 work for clarinet, violin, cello, and piano. Based on Peruvian elements, the work works and reworks various instrumental combinations, creating the sonic tapestry the title refers to. Frank composes with a strong rhythmic feel, using sparse melodic and contrapuntal lines that make the work accessible while sounding like nobody else.

The "Adagio para Amantani" seems more influenced by academia than Andelusia. This haunting work for cello and piano presents small repeated note motifs that seem to hang suspended in space, punctuated by chord clusters. But this isn't just an intellectual exercise. The music has a forward motion and a logical progression to it that makes it work.

The "Quijotadas" for string quartet is similar, but has a much stronger Latin feel to it. To me, it's the most musically substantial composition on the album. While I enjoyed it the first time I heard it, I know repeated hearings will reveal more of the complex structure of the work.

My favorite track was the "Danza de los Saqsampills" for two marimbas. It's a uniquely Frank work, but if I had to describe it in other terms, I'd call it a Latin-American Steve Reich homage (which only hints at what the work sounds like). A better description might be that this is simply six minutes of fun.

The works are performed by the ALIAS Chamber Ensemble, a group Frank has worked closely with. The ensemble know and understand Frank's compositional language, which really adds to the performances.

I have to admit I didn't know a lot about Gabriela Frank before getting this recording. But now that I've listened to it, I'd like to explore her music further.

If you're looking for a fresh compositional voice (especially if you like chamber music), then I highly recommend giving Hilos a listen.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c68139c) out of 5 stars Fresh voice Nov. 15 2011
By Jerry Landis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Gabriela Frank is a bright star in the refreshing new wave of engaging and accessible music. As a fellow Berkeley resident, I've been privileged to hear much of her work in local performance. She is welcome to the wider world of new music, and well presented on this disc.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c6811a4) out of 5 stars Naxos, Hilos with ALIAS Chamber Ensemble Aug. 1 2012
By i <3 music! - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
ALIAS Chamber Ensemble is incredible. They are based in Nashville, TN and this ensemble produces some of the finest musical interpretations I have ever heard. If you love String/Chamber Music, you will love this recording, and ALIAS.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By Claudette K. Columbus - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The titles of Gabriela Lena Frank's albums HILOS and LEYENDAS suggest strong influences from Andean music, but if so, the influences have been traduced. A piece called "Zumbayllo," for instance, named for an Andean spinning top that sings, seems to bear no connection to its title. I would suppose the title was more to lure afficionados of the Peruvian writer Arguedas to purchase either of the two albums on Andean themes. The group is accomplished on the strings, but very misleadingly packaged.

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