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Kronos Quartet plays Steve Reich


Kronos Quartet plays Steve Reich

I have seen a fair amount of criticism by critics and from other quartets over the sound of Kronos Quartet. This is unfounded. What distinguishes Kronos from other contemporary quartets is that they play in unison with a fine sensitivity to each other. They have a temperament derived from tuning to each other and not as individual instruments. Hence the music they play sounds to me like a quartet should sound. Now, they do sound dry and somewhat academic at times, but that is more than made up for by their passion on other recordings. Few twentieth and twentieth first players have, setting out to play contemporary music, stuck to their knitting. Kronos have unerringly. 

Here on this recording, albeit live, they sound sympathetic to their source. Reich has been interpreted by others, not always to his benefit. Of course, no one can sound like Steve Reich playing is own music. Kronos are as faithful to him, this notwithstanding.

Kronos Quartet sound like a quartet. Many of their contemporaries do not.

Malcolm D B Munro
Saturday 1 July, 2017

 

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Filed under: Arts, Media, Music, poetry, songs, stories

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