Bryce Dessner is a renaissance man of contemporary classical composition. Known to most popular music fans as an indie rock guitarist, Dessner’s compositional talent can’t be confined to any singular category.
Cantaloupe Music is excited to share a full stream of Drumkit Quartets, a series of compositions for percussion by Glenn Kotche (Wilco, Illimaq) and performed by Sō Percussion. Released February 26, the stream premiered via Red Bull Music who called the album, "captivating and unpredictable, unexpectedly shifting from serene, pretty moments to clanging chaos and then back again, creating an enjoyable place to find yourself lost."
For years he has been known as the awe inspiring drummer of Wilco, but in his latest series of compositions, the Drumkit Quartets, Glenn Kotche teams with Sō Percussion. To celebrate the announcement, Kotch and Sō Percussion have announced that they will be performing some of the new songs along with other original works at Carnegie Hall next month in addition to making "Drumkit Quartet #54" available for streaming online.
It's been 11 whole months, yes, since we first saw Sō Percussion's Adam Sliwinski's cross-handed study of Dan Trueman's bitKlavier. Shot then by Troy Herion, with Silwinski patched into his Princeton colleague's "prepared digital piano" via Casio USB for prelude-only, with all the bugs beta-ed out now, watch Silwinski's Roland A-88 shake under the more progressive hammer action of "Marbles"--directed by Evan Chapman. Like Ligeti's last Grawemeyer étude for Boulez from Book One, but played by the Synclavier I from Boulez conducts Zappa, lest you think Dan Trueman's lost his own here, well, just press play.
By way of the future comes the db Chronicle handbag by New York-based designer, Diana Boussard. The customizable décor includes an LCD screen that has been paired with the contemporary classical piece by David Lang, entitled "optimism," which is performed by Sō Percussion as the soundtrack.
Even if you aren't a percussionist the name Vic Firth--the world's most prolific drumstick maker--is still in your vocabulary. For the man who started it all, Mr. Everett Joseph "Vic" Firth has died at 85 years old.
Perhaps it was bound to happen to the violin, but the 2-string piezoelectric designed by MONAD Studio brings a violin worthy of its own sci-fi movie. Something out of the Fifth Element, indeed, it's one of five modern instruments designed by the studio.
Via a release from the always informative DOTDOTDOTMusic, the American Composers Forum has announced the winner of its famed National Composition Contest: CalArts composer Todd Lerew. Lerew, who won the 2014 gong for his work Flagging Entertainment of Ultradian Rhythms and the Consequences Thereof, will receive $2,000 in cash. Even better, his piece will be toured by Classicalite's favorite group of beaters Sō Percussion during their future seasons.
The time, dear Classicalites, has come. Yes, Big Ears Festival 2014 has finally posted its daily line up.
Earlier this month, Classicalite updated readers on the Big Ears Festival. The lineup had just been announced and now, Big Ears keeps us waiting just slightly longer.
Sō Percussion's unique style of ensemble infuses all things struck and battered. Sure, composers the likes of Edgard Varèse, John Cage and Steve Reich have passed down their percussive theories, but this quartet has formulated a repertoire--if not an entire ideology--that's pretty much all their own.