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|1. Triple Quartet: First Movement|
|2. Triple Quartet: Second Movement|
|3. Triple Quartet: Third Movement|
|4. Electric Guitar Phase|
|5. Music for a Large Ensemble|
|6. Tokyo/Vermont Counterpoint|
Over a decade after their last collaboration - which produced the 150,000-selling Grammy winner "Different Trains" - Steve Reich and Kronos deliver a world premiere recording which features an overdubbed, three-layered performance by the quartet in a work whose expressive energy marks a high point in the composer's compositional style. With a spirit that mirrors its primary source of inspiration - the last movement of Bartok's Fourth Quartet - the TRIPLE QUARTET has met with critical praise in Kronos' concert performances since its composition in 1999. ELECTRIC GUITAR PHASE is a new version of Violin Phase for four overdubbed electric guitars made by the guitarist Dominic Frasco, and takes the original music to a new zone of swirling hypnosis. MUSIC FOR LARGE ENSEMBLE is performed here by young conductor Alan Pierson directing the ensembles Ossia (from the Eastman School) and Alarm Will Sound in a revised edition of the piece with added violins. TOYKO/VERMONT COUNTERPOINT for midi-marimbas (KAT controllers) is a new version of Vermont Counterpoint, originally for winds. Mika Yoshida, a Japanese percussionist, made the arrangement and performs all the parts: A radically different take on the source, and one with a dazzling quasi-electronica feel, as well as a sense of humor. In all, this new Reich assortment - a major new work partnered with fresh versions of other pieces - is a vivid portrait of the artist's work now, as well as a keen reminder of how current his earlier music continues to feel, decades after its composition.
The Kronos Quartet's advocacy of contemporary music is one of the wonders of our time. Here the four players appear in triplicate, performing Steve Reich's Triple Quartet by pre-recording two quartets and playing the third simultaneously with the tape. As they have demonstrated time and time again in their vast repertoire, they possess the razor-sharp precision Reich's music begs for. The clear, closely miked recording means that the interplay of part work is consistently fascinating. The Kronos brings out an almost Copland-like quality in the second movement, which speaks of quiet, open spaces. The four pieces on this disc offer a perfectly balanced, musically satisfying set of contrasts. Electric Guitar Phase is a 2001 version of the 1967 Violin Phase with Dominic Frasca overdubbing the four electric guitar parts. Exuding a purer minimalism than Triple Quartet, Electric Guitar Phase is heady and hypnotic. Music for Large Ensemble is a glittering, xylophone/marimba-decorated panorama of sound, but it is a fitting tribute to the talents of marimba player Mika Yoshida that Tokyo/Vermont Counterpoint acts as a satisfying climax to the disc. Originally for flutes, alto flutes and piccolos and entitled merely Vermont Counterpoint, Yoshida's own arrangement is a truly virtuoso feat, gripping from first to last. --Colin Clarke
From the sharp, discerning Triple Quartet, to Tokyo-Vermont Counterpoint, this CD is worth hearing to see an insight into Reich's later works, (starting with Triple Quartet), and... Read morePublished on June 10 2004 by Jonny B
The rest of it is actually pretty boring. not boring like the desert music though so it's okay.Published on May 21 2003 by Matthew G. Taylor
Here you get a lot of Reich minimalist styles over the years.
Kronos play -as usual- well on this one in Bartok style and they taped themself and overdubbed it with a stunning... Read more
Here Steve Reich offers a refreshed experiencing of the old pieces Violin Phase & Music for a Large Ensemble. Read morePublished on March 14 2002 by "hirofantv"
A characteristic of better performances of Steve Reich is the how the dense rythmic structure creates a complex and expansive aural space. Read morePublished on Dec 1 2001 by Matthew Phillips
While Philip Glass continues to crank out formulaic mush that sounds like everything else he's written, Steve Reich has continued to evolve and change as a composer. Read morePublished on Oct. 29 2001 by Jeff Abell
The first piece on this disc--the Triple Quartet--may be startling to listeners familiar with Steve Reich's music. Read morePublished on Oct. 19 2001 by Daniel Johnson