Clarinetist Andrea Cheeseman infuses every note of her performances with a sense of passion and purpose. It is with this intentionality that she approaches Ravello Records’ SOMEWHERE, an album of electroacoustic works that expand the clarinet repertoire to new heights while also showcasing Cheeseman in the genre where she feels most at home.
The title, SOMEWHERE, is deeply telling—listeners are taken somewhere new, somewhere completely different, with every piece. This does not, however, suggest a lack of cohesion throughout the album. In fact, each piece fits together as neatly as the connection between the clarinet and the computer. The atmospheric nature of the first three pieces—the fluid Arioso/Doubles, the e.e. cummings-inspired somewhere, and Messy whose title is derived from a young daughter’s analysis of her mother’s abstract paintings—creates space for Cheeseman to fully express herself. SOMEWHERE moves into a more rigid, angular soundscape with Ultraviolet and Penelope’s Song, the latter using recordings of a weaving loom as a foundation for the lonely but resolute responses to challenges by Odysseus’ faithful wife in Homer’s epic. The album then moves back to its earlier meditative space with the ebbs and flows of Breath before concluding with the shimmering textures and harmonics of Favorable Odds.
SOMEWHERE creates a one-of-a-kind dialogue between this symbiotic musical pairing. Cheeseman’s thoughtful, nuanced, and altogether captivating performances welcome listeners into an experience they won’t want to miss.