Harvey has been awarded the Charles Cros Academie's most prestigious award in 2010, the Prix du Président de la Republic (lifetime achievement award) for his String Quartet disc (Aeon). The disc features stunning performances from the Arditti Quartet and received rave reviews:
‘Harvey sculpts a force field of harmonics from anchoring fundamentals. These nebulous, thrilling unstable timbres are obviously born out of ears primed in the electronic music studio, but then Harvey plunges his musicians into a plush soulful melody line. Irrational passions are thus tossed together with a more cool and rational underbelly, and that’s a magical way to create art – especially when Harvey allows that magic to overspill the cauldron.
In the Second Quartet, an ecstatically lyrical cello line bolts for freedom, pulling together embedded hints of tonality that have peppered the score. Then… Harvey pulls that rug of harmonic stability from under the cellist, who responds with guttural, liberated yelps. The String Trio begins with what might pass as invented folk music, ending 13 minutes later with the trio screaming melodic contours in an alienated super-high register, moving beyond the frame of polite chamber music. In both works: harmony becomes noise becomes music’
Gramophone (Philip Clark), February 2010