john luther adams
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Red Arc/Blue Veil

Recommended by Alex Ross, music critic of The New Yorker.

“There’s a sense of vast, open space in John Luther Adams’s music that’s without parallel among American composers [...]. Adams, living in Alaska, breathes different air from the rest of his colleagues. The four postminimalist works here each play out over 10 to 15 minutes, but sound as if they could go on forever… the wide vista stretches out in front of you, waiting. ” – Marc Geelhoed, Time Out

“John Luther Adams seems to be striking out in new directions each time I hear a new CD of his. [In] "Dark Waves" [...] the effect is titanic, and although the mood of the work is dark, there is an openness to the harmonies, even a luminosity, that makes it almost pretty. While "Dark Waves" is watery, […] "Among Red Mountains" seems to be about solids. The former is Adams’ “Moonlight Sonata”, if you will, and the latter is the “Hammerklavier”. "Qilyuan" is a tour de force of bass drumming […]. There’s something very ritualistic about this work, and indeed, "Qilyuan" is an Inuit word for a “device of power,” or a shaman’s drum. Like "Dark Waves", "Red Arc / Blue Veil" is pretty, but it is anything but sweet.” – Raymond Tuttle, Classical.Net

“…a distinctive universe where pianos and percussion sonically evoke the majesty of natural phenomena… Adams’ music might be likened to powerful glacial masses whose movements are so slow they’re imperceptible. ” – Textura

“"Dark Waves" […] consists of huge, ever expanding volleys of piano sound that evoke a stormy night’s voyage […] "Red Arc / Blue Veil" […] moves forward in sheets of sound […] more brightly colored and not as monolithic […]. [In] "Among Red Mountains" […] Adams’ aim is to address the granitic strength of mountains themselves […]. "Qilyuan" […] rumbles along like a great multi-frequency earthquake… ” – David Lewis, All Music Guide

“… a majestic unfolding of arpeggios and washes of resonance that evoke natural phenomena without the need for mystical baggage, while "Among Red Mountains" unleashes piano chords of varying density […]. A disc that brings this singular and still largely unheralded composer more fully into focus. “ – Richard Whitehouse, International Record Review (UK)

” Adams’ music […] not anxious to demonstrate anything, the center of this music is just inspiration and like Carver’s writings surplus has been removed from these compositions… simple but vibrant, melodic and intense […] it goes deep. ” – Andrea Ferraris, Chain D.L.K.

“…a release that grows on you every time you press the play button. Highly addictive.” – Tom Sekowski, Gaz-Eta

Adams's swelling orchestral work may be the loveliest apocalypse in musical history. - Alex Ross, New Yorker
john luther adams
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