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25 Years: Retrospective

Album Summary

>Adams, John : John's Book of Alleged Dances, for string quartet
>Pärt, Arvo : Fratres
>Pärt, Arvo : Psalom, for string quartet
>Pärt, Arvo : Summa
>Pärt, Arvo : Missa sillabica, for chorus
>Benshoof, Ken : Traveling Music no 4, for string quartet
>Benshoof, Ken : Song of Twenty Shadows, for string quartet
>Piazzolla, Astor : Five Tango Sensations, for bandoneon & string quartet (abridgement and arrangement of Sette sequenze
>Piazzolla, Astor : Four, for Tango
>Feldman, Morton : Piano and String Quartet, for piano & string quartet
>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 4 ("Buczak")
>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 3 ("Mishima")
>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Company")
>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 5
>Golijov, Osvaldo : Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind, for clarinet & string quartet
>Gubaidulina, Sofia : Quartet for Strings no 4, with tape
>Ali-Zadeh, Franghiz : Mugam Sayagi, for string quartet
>Gorecki, Henryk M. : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Quasi una Fantasia"), Op. 64
>Gorecki, Henryk M. : Quartet for Strings no 1 ("Already It Is Dusk"), Op. 62
>Reich, Steve : Different Trains, for double string quartet & tape
>Crumb, George : Black Angels (Images I), for electric string quartet
>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Cadenza on the Night Plain, for string quartet
>Riley, Terry [Composer] : G-Song, for string quartet & synthesizer, or synthesizer & soprano sax
>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Salome Dances for Peace, pieces (5) for string quartet
>Schnittke, Alfred : Quartet for Strings no 2
>Schnittke, Alfred : Quartet for Strings no 4
>Schnittke, Alfred : Concerto for choir (Concerto for soprano & chorus)
>Sculthorpe, Peter : Quartet for Strings no 11 ("Jabiru Dreaming")
>Sculthorpe, Peter : Quartet for Strings no 8
>Sculthorpe, Peter : From Ubirr, for string quartet & 2 didgeridoos
>Phan, P Q. : Memoirs of a Lost Soul, for string quartet
>Volans, Kevin : Quartet for Strings No 1 "White Man Sleeps"
Performers Composers
Notes & Reviews:

The 20th century has not been kind to most standard classical music forms. The piano sonata, the concerto, the symphony -- none of them have disappeared entirely, but none remain in a state that could be called even remotely healthy. The same was true of the string quartet until 1973, when violinist David Harrington got some friends together to play contemporary music and offered his old high-school composition teacher a bag of donuts if he'd write a piece for them. The resulting composition was the first of over 400 works that have been written for the Kronos Quartet over the course of the following 25 years, a period which has seen the revitalization of the previously moribund string quartet format. But Kronos has done more than simply triple the size of the string quartet repertoire; by focusing on living composers, by cultivating a somewhat rebellious image, and by playing with impeccable professionalism and skill, Kronos has brought a new and primarily young audience to classical music. This massive ten-disc retrospective includes performances of 31 major compositions, most previously released, but some in new recordings. There are none of the miniature works that fill so many of Kronos' individual albums; these are all long-form compositions, all but one presented in their entirety. They include two string quartets by Henryk Gorecki, Terry Riley's post-minimalist Cadenza on the Night Plain, Morton Feldman's Piano and String Quartet, three quartets by Philip Glass, and many others, but the highlights of the collection are the tremendously moving Different Trains by Steve Reich (who combined train sounds, multi-tracked string quartet, and the recorded voices of concentration camp survivors and Pullman porters to create a powerful and deeply personal statement on the Holocaust) and Alfred Schnittke's exquisite Collected Songs Where Every Verse Is Filled With Grief. The packaging is excellent as well, and includes a booklet packed with photos, essays, and notes on the individual composers and compositions. ~ Rick Anderson



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Works Details

>Adams, John : John's Book of Alleged Dances, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 34 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1994

>Arvo Pärt (1935 - ) : Fratres
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1989

>Arvo Pärt (1935 - ) : Psalom, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 8 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1985-1997

>Arvo Pärt (1935 - ) : Summa
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1991

>Arvo Pärt (1935 - ) : Missa sillabica, for chorus
  • Performers: Neal Rogers (Tenor); Ellen Hargis (Soprano); Kronos Quartet (Strings); Paul Hillier (Bass)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1977

>Benshoof, Ken : Traveling Music no 4, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 19 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1974

>Benshoof, Ken : Song of Twenty Shadows, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1994

>Piazzolla, Astor : Five Tango Sensations, for bandoneón & string quartet (abridgement and arrangement of Sette sequenze
  • Performers: Kronos Quartet (Strings); Astor Piazzolla (Bandoneon)
  • Running Time: 26 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1990

>Piazzolla, Astor : Four, for Tango
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 59 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1989

>Feldman, Morton : Piano and String Quartet, for piano & string quartet
  • Performers: Kronos Quartet (Strings); Aki Takahashi (Piano)
  • Running Time: 79 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1985

>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 4 ("Buczak")
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 23 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1989

>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 3 ("Mishima")
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Notes: Composition written: 1985.
  • Running Time: 14 min. 56 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1985

>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Company")
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 30 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1983

>Glass, Philip : Quartet for Strings no 5
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 21 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1991

>Golijov, Osvaldo : Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind, for clarinet & string quartet
  • Performers: David Krakauer (Clarinet); Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 31 min. 35 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1994

>Gubaidulina, Sofia : Quartet for Strings no 4, with tape
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 56 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1994

>Ali-Zadeh, Franghiz : Mugam Sayagi, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 21 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1993

>Henryk Mikolaj Górecki (Composer) (1933 - 2010) : Quartet for Strings no 2 ("Quasi una Fantasia"), Op. 64
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 31 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1990

>Henryk Mikolaj Górecki (Composer) (1933 - 2010) : Quartet for Strings no 1 ("Already It Is Dusk"), Op. 62
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 14 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1988

>Reich, Steve : Different Trains, for double string quartet & tape
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 26 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1988

>Crumb, George : Black Angels (Images I), for electric string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 18 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1970

>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Cadenza on the Night Plain, for string quartet
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 23 min. 57 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1984

>Riley, Terry [Composer] : G-Song, for string quartet & synthesizer, or synthesizer & soprano sax
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 46 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1980

>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Salome Dances for Peace, pieces (5) for string quartet :: III. The Gift
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1985-1987

>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Salome Dances for Peace, pieces (5) for string quartet :: III. The Gift
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 16 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1985-1987

>Riley, Terry [Composer] : Salome Dances for Peace, pieces (5) for string quartet :: V. Good Medicine
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 13 min. 33 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1985-1987

>Schnittke, Alfred : Quartet for Strings no 2
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 21 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1980

>Schnittke, Alfred : Quartet for Strings no 4
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 34 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1989

>Schnittke, Alfred : Concerto for choir (Concerto for soprano & chorus) :: Collected Songs Where Every Verse Is Filled with
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Concerto
  • Written: 1984-1985

>Sculthorpe, Peter : Quartet for Strings no 11 ("Jabiru Dreaming")
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 41 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music

>Sculthorpe, Peter : Quartet for Strings no 8
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1969

>Sculthorpe, Peter : From Ubirr, for string quartet & 2 didgeridoos
  • Performers: Michael Brosnan (Didjeridu); Mark Nolan (Didjeridu); Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1994

>Phan, P Q. : Memoirs of a Lost Soul, for string quartet :: Tragedy at the Opera
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 37 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1995

>Volans, Kevin : Quartet for Strings No 1 "White Man Sleeps"
  • Performer: Kronos Quartet (Strings)
  • Running Time: 22 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 1982