Discovery with Lynnsay Maynard

Brooklyn Rider: The Quartet with No Label

Friday, October 31, 2014
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An iconoclastic group celebrates its first decade by expanding the definition of classical music in its new album, The Brooklyn Rider Almanac.

To hear an interview with WCRB's Lynnsay Maynard, click on "Listen" above.



At the beginning of the 20th century, the Munich-based artistic collaborative Der Blaue Reiter (“The Blue Rider”) sourced inspiration from multiple creative disciplines and genres, from paintings to essays to puppetry. Drawing from their name and creative process, the globally celebrated string quartet Brooklyn Rider celebrates its 10th anniversary with a visionary new album, “The Brooklyn Rider Almanac”, a nod to influences from the past and a decided inclusion of talents from the present.

Brooklyn Rider

Brooklyn Rider

The Brooklyn-based quartet commissioned 15 pieces from artistic muses inside and outside the realm of classical music for their new album. From jazz great Bill Frisell to singer-songwriter Aoife O’Donovan (daughter of WGBH’s Brian O’Donovan), the album is a testament to Brooklyn Rider’s transformative ability to perform in a variety of settings, from the stage of Lincoln Center to South by Southwest, influenced by myriad styles and mediums.

In the months following the album’s release, Brooklyn Rider will present a series of multimedia events inspired by and stemming from the compositions on the album. Earlier this month, dance ensemble Dance Heginbotham and My Brightest Diamond’s Shara Worden joined the quartet for a performance of “Exit” at New York City’s White Lights Festival (see video above).

The tone and texture of the album shift from track to track, pulling listeners from a piece inspired by improvisational saxophone to a solemn piece drawing from the feeling of solitude in William Faulkner’s “The Sound and the Fury”... Composers and soloists uniquely enhance each composition, from the frantic, string-laden opener “Necessary Henry!”, composed by Albanian cellist Rubin Kodheli, to the clapping and vocals by My Brightest Diamond’s Shara Worden on “Exit”, composed by Brooklyn Rider’s own Colin Jacobsen. Adding to the collaborative nature of this album, Brooklyn Rider utilized a Kickstarter campaign to fund the recording on Mercury Classics.

After 10 years of outside collaboration and experimentation, Brooklyn Rider is still eager to push the boundaries of contemporary classical music – and have fun doing it.

For more information and to purchase this recording, visit the ArkivMusic.

And to learn more about Almanac, visit Brooklyn Rider.
























From Arcade Fire to Classical

Friday, September 19, 2014
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Canadian multi-instrumentalist Richard Reed Parry, known for his work as a member of the Grammy-award winning band Arcade Fire, takes a dive into the rhythms of the human body Music for Heart and Breath.



A quartet of musicians sit before sheets of music with instruments in hand, casually dressed and waiting for instruction. A rehearsal like any other, except the human body is the metronome; each musician is wearing a stethoscope strapped to his or her chest, following their own heartbeat or breath to keep time or, sometimes, that of another performer.

This scene personifies the concept behind Richard Reed Parry’s new album Music for Heart and Breath. Released on Deutsche Grammophon, with contributions from the iconic new music ensemble Kronos Quartet, pop and classical crossover ensemble yMusic, and avant-garde composer Nico Muhly, the compositions and various instrumental configurations explore the notion that the human body can dictate how music is performed and how we interact with it.

Parry is not a name associated with classical music. The Canadian multi-instrumentalist is a member of the Grammy Award-winning rock band Arcade Fire, in which his musical voice might emerge from guitar, double bass, or accordion. Music for Heart and Breath is a reflection of Parry’s desire to make music that reacts with the mind and the body through rhythmic, haunting compositions in an experiment that takes us beyond genre or tradition. 



For more information and to purchase this recording, visit ArkivMusic.

















About Discovery with Lynnsay Maynard

There's so much going on in the world of classical music, not all of which fits squarely in the "classical" box. Explore something new each month with WCRB's afternoon host, Lynnsay Maynard.

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