'Arcadiana' reviews

“Adès’ originality lies in his exceptional ability to absorb and transform found objects in a language that sounds like no-one else’s.”
Chicago Tribune (John von Rhein), 15 November 1999

“Paradise for Mr Adès is a place of complexity rather than simplistic loveliness; in fact, the idyllic and the terrifying are closely intertwined here. One moment dark, sliding string figures evoke a dance to death; the next is a serene paean to England in slow, gracefully consonant chordal passages.”
The New York Times (Allan Kozinn), 29 February 1999

Arcadiana, a suite for string quartet, includes a surpassingly lovely movement entitled ‘O Albion’ that bears only the slightest trace of youthful irony. Impossibly it all works. The thorniest textures are executed with extreme lucidity: the lyric stretches are genuinely tuneful; the whole weird succession of events makes perplexing sense.”
The New York Times (Alex Ross), 2 July 1995

“Most importantly, the indefinable suchness of these seven portraits saves them from being pastiches. They all have an indescribable but indisputable ‘layer’ covering them, some smouldering or decaying process forced upon our modern minds as we try to deal with this distant stuff. All inherent sweetness in the piece seems to be penetrated with a kind of mould - always, though, expressed with a supreme instrumental virtuosity… Thus, I believe, is ‘distance’ achieved: like music from an ever-departing ship, where the passengers in their innocent pastimes may (or may not) know that they are doomed. Not surprisingly, these features leave slightly melancholic impressions; but also a mark of beauty, of indisputable suchness.”
Per Nørgård - ISCM speech, 2002

“From the opening Venezia Notturno, we are in a bygone world of weird spectral phenomena The Arditti beautifully captured that aura of the ungraspable, not least in the final two movements: Albion, with its almost Mahlerian sonoroties filtered through a distorting prism, and the fragmented Lethe.”
The Times (Barry Millington), 23 April 2001

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