Album: Quatuor Diotima, American Music (Naïve)


For this follow-up to their challenging album of Berg, Webern and Schoenberg, the Quatuor Diotima has devised a programme of American modernist pieces, which struggles to hang together as naturally as it might.

Marked by the shrill, astringent tone of the violins, their version of Reich's "Different Trains" is less satisfying than the recent recording by the London Steve Reich Ensemble, though the same factor works to their advantage in realising George Crumb's "Black Angels for Electric Quartet", a dramatic, sometimes antagonistically cacophonous assemblage of 13 brief "images from the dark land", in places seemingly influenced by Bernard Herrmann's piercing score for Psycho.

DOWNLOAD THIS: Black Angels for Electric Quartet