PLAYING ON THE EDGE
Described as having “Versatility and flair with lively improvisations” by the New York Times and being “always compelling and always exhilarating” by Imperfect Fifths, NYC-based Sirius Quartet is only the most natural choice for showcasing the genius of five genre-bending contemporary composers. Navona Records’ PLAYING ON THE EDGE brings inspiration and experience from all walks of life into one string quartet collection with the music of composers Jennifer Castellano, Ian Erickson, Brian Field, Marga Richter, and Mari Tamaki.
PLAYING ON THE EDGE suggests, beyond all else, the ability to take risks and push limits, both on the part of the composers and performers. Each piece involves unconventional tactics, from performers choosing the order of movements to music that completely evolves rhythmically and harmonically from beginning to end. Emphasis on dissonant chords, sul ponticello bowings (quite literally playing on the edge), jagged and uneven rhythmic movement, and general innovation and rule-bending from each composer permeates the album. And none are more equipped for this risky yet rich undertaking than Sirius Quartet, best known for embracing the unexpected.
Progress and innovation require the spirit and initiative to push back on boundaries and ask questions about whether anything truly can’t be done. Fortunately, the artists of PLAYING ON THE EDGE are well up to such a task.