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Plays Sigur Rós (MP3s)

  • 307452

News & Reviews

  • It was thirty years ago today: Kronos Quartet's album Black Angels, featuring composer George Crumb’s title piece, was released on Nonesuch. Kronos's connection to the piece dates back to the ensemble's origins when, in 1973, violinist David Harrington was inspired to form the group after hearing the work. Crumb's piece sets a powerful tone for the collection, which addresses the political, physical, and spiritual consequences of war, and includes works by Tallis, Ives, Shostakovich, and Istvan Marta. "As a piece of music, George Crumb's Black Angels remains at the heart of Kronos," Harrington says in a new short film about the album you can watch here. "It seems as relevant today as it did in 1973. As an album, Black Angels set our course for the next thirty years and beyond."

  • Kronos Quartet has released a short film edited by Evan Neff scored to its performance of an excerpt of Peace Be Till, which composer Zachary Watkins wrote for the group in 2018. In the piece, Dr. Clarence B. Jones, the former personal counsel, speechwriter, and advisor to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., reads King's defense of nonviolent direct action in his famed Letter from Birmingham Jail, which Jones calls "the symphony of social justice." In 1963, Jones had smuggled King's words from the Birmingham, Alabama, jail cell in which he was being held for his participation in a peaceful demonstration.

  • About This Album

    The two pieces included on Kronos Quartet Plays Sigur Rós have both been staples of Kronos’ live concerts for several years: an arrangement of Icelandic experimental rock group Sigur Rós’s “Flugufrelsarinn” (“The Fly Freer”) and an arrangement of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

    “I first heard Sigur Rós in 2000 and it was thrilling,” said David Harrington, Kronos founder and artistic director.  “I could not stop listening to them.  Kronos had to play their music. Sigur Rós create entire universes with their sound: imaginary places populated by desires and colors and feelings that belong solely to the fleetingly understood realm of music.”

    Kronos commissioned an arrangement of Sigur Rós' composition “Flugufrelsarinn” (Icelandic for “The Fly Freer”), from the Ágætis Byrjun album in 2002.  In its original, sung version, “Flugufrelsarinn” relates a parable of salvation and sacrifice, in which an unnamed narrator tries to rescue helpless flies in a lake from the jaws of the approaching salmon. In Stephen Prutsman’s arrangement for Kronos, the work takes on a new delicacy while losing none of its essential mystery.

    The Quartet has been playing its Prutsman/Kronos version of “The Star-Spangled Banner”—inspired by Jimi Hendrix’s famous Woodstock interpretation—in concert since 2003. The Los Angeles Times called a recent performance of the piece, “a fiery political protest that recalled [Kronos’] roots exploring classic rock.” Although it has always been an audience favorite, the group had never released a recording of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before this digital-only release.

    Credits

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on May 29, 2008 - 7:14pm
Release Date: 
Tuesday, September 4, 2007 - 04:00
DescriptionExcerpt: 

Kronos performs a Stephen Prutsman arrangement of the Sigur Rós piece "Flugufrelsarinn," from the Icelandic quartet's breakthrough album, Ágætis Byrjun. This contemplative track is paired with the more raucous Kronos interpretation of "The Star Spangled Banner," in a Prutsman arrangement that channels Jimi Hendrix.

Description: 

The two pieces included on Kronos Quartet Plays Sigur Rós have both been staples of Kronos’ live concerts for several years: an arrangement of Icelandic experimental rock group Sigur Rós’s “Flugufrelsarinn” (“The Fly Freer”) and an arrangement of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

“I first heard Sigur Rós in 2000 and it was thrilling,” said David Harrington, Kronos founder and artistic director.  “I could not stop listening to them.  Kronos had to play their music. Sigur Rós create entire universes with their sound: imaginary places populated by desires and colors and feelings that belong solely to the fleetingly understood realm of music.”

Kronos commissioned an arrangement of Sigur Rós' composition “Flugufrelsarinn” (Icelandic for “The Fly Freer”), from the Ágætis Byrjun album in 2002.  In its original, sung version, “Flugufrelsarinn” relates a parable of salvation and sacrifice, in which an unnamed narrator tries to rescue helpless flies in a lake from the jaws of the approaching salmon. In Stephen Prutsman’s arrangement for Kronos, the work takes on a new delicacy while losing none of its essential mystery.

The Quartet has been playing its Prutsman/Kronos version of “The Star-Spangled Banner”—inspired by Jimi Hendrix’s famous Woodstock interpretation—in concert since 2003. The Los Angeles Times called a recent performance of the piece, “a fiery political protest that recalled [Kronos’] roots exploring classic rock.” Although it has always been an audience favorite, the group had never released a recording of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before this digital-only release.

Cover Art: 
Nonesuch Selection Number: 

307452

Number of Discs in Set: 
1disc
ns_album_artistid: 
67
ns_album_id: 
675
ns_album_releasedate: 
Tuesday, September 4, 2007 - 04:00
ns_genre_1: 
0
ns_genre_2: 
0
Album Status: 
UPC/Price: 
Label: 
SINGLE FORMAT (OLD)
UPC: 
075597996142
Price: 
2.00
Artist Name: 
Kronos Quartet
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