Review from American Record Guide March/April 2008:
"In contrast, the six composers of the works on Sustenance have deliberately created a cohesive album-as-work. Where dim sum (and Dim Sum) is a whole bunch of little things to take in more or less at once, this work is a series of courses, each section discreet but in its larger place, in proportion and harmony with what comes before and after. In between songs and chamber pieces, Peter Gilbert has composed electronic "Passages" (perhaps the wine for each course?) not always explicitly musically derived from the pieces before or after but structurally and atmospherically linking them so that the whole 75 minutes plays without break. It's very interesting and beautifully performed. Elizabeth Weigle singing Vineet Shende's Sonetos de Amor is particularly outstanding. Orianna Webb's Sustenance Variations for Flexible Music, a quartet of percussion, piano, saxophones, and guitar, is exciting, even in the still passages, and entirely convincing. John Link's duo For Irving Lippel
has some captivating, restrained moments where the resonances of guitar and vibraphone are allowed to shimmer and blur in an exquisite way. The whole forms a pleasing arc of textural and timbral density."
American Record Guide, 3/2008
Sustenance as an album is an experiment in bringing the concept album to contemporary classical music. Daniel Lippel brings together several stellar colleagues to perform new works with guitar by some of the most exciting composers in the United States, including Joseph Pereira, Seung-Ah Oh, Adam B. Silverman, John Link, Vineet Shende, and Orianna Webb. Peter Gilbert provides the scaffolding for the whole record with electronic "passages" that manage the transition from one musical world to the next.
Lippel is joined on the recording by several wonderful performers, including soprano Elizabeth Weigle, flutist Erin Lesser, percussionist Jeffrey Irving, and ensemble Flexible Music (Lippel, pianist Eric Huebner, saxophonist Tim Ruedeman, and percussionist Haruka Fujii).
from the liner notes:
Music is melted architecture, architecture in time. Yet, modern life conspired against the instinct towards temporal design and challenges a patient search for sustained meaning. Our experience with music often mirrors the hectic pace of life: we have easy access to immediate emotion, but it has become harder to locate those connections that are earned over longer periods. It is as if we live in a constant state of transition, with no chance to truly inhabit our lives- or we experience no transitions at all, only quickly switching between the channels of our complicated identities. The works on this recording explore divergent musical spaces, from the jocular to the sensuous, each returning to a place of contemplation in connecting passages. These interluding foyers, hallways, and stairwells suggest that the in-between moments are as essential as the primary rooms of experience. This curatorial approach houses separate edifices under a scaffolding that aspires to connect disparate corners of our interior world. In constructing the bridges between pieces, we humbly take inspiration from those disciplines for which conceptual unity is a physical reality. Ritual seeks unity and spiritual sustenance through pious design of the temporal experience. Music is sonic ritual, architecture in time.
Engineered by Ryan Streber
Design by Ellen Butters
Produced by Peter Gilbert and Daniel Lippel
Co-Produced with John Link, Orianna Webb, Adam B. Silverman
New Focus Recordings FCR103
This recording was partially made possible by generous support from the Mikhashoff Trust for New Music and the Fletcher Family Foundation of Bowdoin College
“Daniel Lippel is sturdy and reticent. At first glance, he gives the impression of a young Marlon Brando; he is exceptional in his craft but he does not ham it up. The apotheosis of the modern guitarist, Mr. Lippel, who received his PhD from the Manhattan School of Music, has won various competitions and played amongst some of today’s top new music chamber groups. Add that to his world touring with indie-rock group Mice Parade, and you get more than the sum of the parts. Mr. Lippel’s recently released CD is a fine example of contemporary guitar literature and we explored the motivations behind his unique program choices."
James Hanna, Guitar Review Fall 2005
New York Guitarist Daniel Lippel is active as a soloist and collaborator in several styles. As a recording artist, Lippel’s cd of Bach transcriptions was listed among the “Best New Releases from North America” in the May 2006 issue of The Gramophone, and his recording of contemporary guitar works, "Resonance", received critical praise from American Record Guide, Guitar Review, and Music-Web International. Lippel’s recent recitals include the Guitars International Series in Cleveland, Trinity Concerts at One Series in New York, Ft. Worth Modern Art Museum, Music from the Forefront Series at Bowling Green State University, Boston Classical Guitar Society, and Oberlin Conservatory of Music. His active involvement with new music is reflected in his solo engagements for such groups as the Harvard Group for New Music, Friends and Enemies of New Music (NY), and the Look and Listen Festival (NY). Chamber music is the core of Lippel's career, and he is a regular member of the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), Flexible Music, Irving Lippel Project, and the Zvi Migdal Tango Ensemble. Recent season's performances with these ensembles include concerts at Lincoln Center's Mostly Mozart Festival, Miller Theatre in New York, Chicago Cultural Center, Hertz Hall at UC Berkeley, and other venues throughout the country. He has also appeared with the Cygnus Ensemble, American Symphony Orchestra, Argento Ensemble, New York Virtuoso Singers, and the Columbia Sinfonietta, and in venues including Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Weill Hall, Merkin Hall, Symphony Space, Princeton University, SUNY Buffalo, AKI New Music Festival, and the Cooperstown and Norfolk Chamber Music Festivals. Lippel has been honored to give guitar masterclasses at the Cleveland Institute of Music and Bowling Green State University and guest lecture presentations to composition departments at the University of Texas at Austin, University of North Texas, and Manhattan School of Music. Lippel won first prizes in the Stafford (England) Guitar Competition, ASTA Competition, and Boston Guitar Society’s Guitar Competition. He has premiered and recorded several solo and chamber works by established and emerging composers. Lippel has toured North America, Western Europe, and East Asia with Fat Cat Records’ indie rock band Mice Parade. Mr. Lippel was on faculty teaching classical guitar at Bowling Green State University from 1999-2001. He received his Doctor of Musical Arts Degree from the Manhattan School of Music, under the guidance of David Starobin. Lippel's former teachers include Jason Vieaux, Ricardo Iznaola, John Homquist, David Leisner, Steve Aron, and Nicholas Goluses, He can be found on the web at www.danlippel.com.