International Contemporary Ensemble | Abandoned Time

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Daniel Lippel\'s website ICE official website New Focus Recordings

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Classical: Contemporary Avant Garde: Modern Composition Moods: Instrumental
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Abandoned Time

by International Contemporary Ensemble

The high-flying New York based new music band ICE features its inimitable guitarist Dan Lippel on this no-holds barred collection of five bracing ensemble pieces by composers from around the world.
Genre: Classical: Contemporary
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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1. Dai Fujikura: Abandoned Time
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8:59 album only
2. Mario Davidovsky: Festino
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10:25 album only
3. Kaija Saariaho: Adjö
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10:37 album only
4. Du Yun: Visissitudes No. 1
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14:22 album only
5. Magnus Lindberg: Linea D'ombra
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14:59 album only
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The high flying NY new music band ICE features its sensational guitarist Daniel Lippel in a recording of five bracing new pieces for ensemble with guitar. The cd includes the premiere recordings of two rising composition stars: Dai Fujikura's Abandoned Time for rock guitar and ensemble, and Du Yun's Vicissitudes no. 1. Also on the disc are ICE's full on version of Magnus Lindberg's classic quartet Linea d'ombra, Mario Davidovsky's identity juggling Festino, and Kaija Saariaho's beautifully lyrical Adjo with phenomenal soprano Tony Arnold.
The five pieces work together as a cohesive artistic statement, highlighting a trend in contemporary music towards a sheer physical and sensual gestural language, a style that the high energy ICE is particularly well known for in their performances.

"The title track on Dan Lippel’s new CD with the International Contemporary Ensemble, Abandoned Time (New Focus), is scored for chamber group—strings, piano, flute, clarinet—so it’s a bit of a shock when his slithering, distorted electric guitar makes its first entrance. Written by young Japanese composer Dai Fujikura, the piece is packed with collar-grabbing stop-start transitions and dissonant strings that deliver choppy unison parts and ominous long tones, but Lippel’s guitar presides over the proceedings whether it’s screaming atop the din or weaving delicately through it. Also a longtime member of the post-rock band Mice Parade, he tackles a strictly modern repertoire on Abandoned Time, backed with sensitivity and verve by members of ICE, a partly local collective that’s emerged as one of the country’s boldest advocates of new music. Lippel plays acoustic guitar on most of the other compositions—by Mario Davidovsky, Kaija Saariaho, Du Yun, and Magnus Lindberg—and they’re just as demanding, filled with jagged lines, blistering rhythms, and explosions of energy."
—Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, November 17, 2008

"International Contemporary Ensemble, which was founded in 2001, consists of over thirty musicians, but their performances generally draw on only a handful at a time; this recording features a dozen players, but most of the works are trios or quartets for unconventional combinations of instruments and voice. The unifying element in the repertoire on this CD is its unapologetic modernism -- this is music with a spiky, sinewy physicality that makes no concession to easy accessibility, and there is a good mix of pieces by established and emerging composers. Abandoned Time, by Dai Fujikura, includes almost the whole ensemble, and is essentially a small concerto for electric guitar, played here by Daniel Lippel. Its language may be modernist, but it's not the academic modernism of the late twentieth century; the piece is strongly flavored with a loose-limbed energy and grittiness that's reminiscent of Bang on a Can. Kaija Saariaho's Adjö, for voice, flute, and guitar requires the singer and instrumentalists to use a variety of extended techniques, and is notable for the sense of frantic disjunction that it creates with instruments that are most often used for their lyrical quality. Vicissitudes No. 1, by Du Yun, which includes both Western and traditional Chinese instruments, is characterized by frenzied anxiety, but has an expanse of serene equipoise at its center. The ensemble plays with exquisite precision, understanding, and fierce energy and engagement -- this is a group to watch out for. The sound is exceptionally clear, crisp, and well-defined.
—Stephen Eddins , All Music Guide, 2009
"The performances of the International Contemporary Ensemble are staggeringly cool." American Record Guide, January 2009

“In recent years the International Contemporary Ensemble has proved itself one of the most adventurous and accomplished groups in new music.” Steve Smith, New York Times


"The title track on Dan Lippel’s new CD with the International Contemporary Ensemble, Abandoned Time (New Focus), is scored for chamber group-so it’s a bit of a shock when his slithering, distorted electric guitar makes its first entrance. Written by young Japanese composer Dai Fujikura, the piece is packed with collar-grabbing stop-start transitions and dissonant strings that deliver choppy unison parts and ominous long tones, but Lippel’s guitar presides over the proceedings whether it’s screaming atop the din or weaving delicately through it. Also a longtime member of the post-rock band Mice Parade, he tackles a strictly modern repertoire here, backed with sensitivity and verve by members of ICE, a partly local collective that’s emerged as one of the country’s boldest advocates of new music. Lippel plays acoustic guitar on most of the other compositions and they’re just as demanding, filled with jagged lines, blistering rhythms, and explosions of energy."
—Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, November 17, 2008

“vivid, high-energy performances…” Allan Kozinn, New York Times

“It would be hard to overpraise the prodigiously talented, bracingly idealistic and indefatigable ICE.” – Michael Cameron, Chicago Tribune

“crackling virtuosity and palpable commitment…their music grabs the listener by the lapels and refuses to let go.” – John Von Rhein, Chicago Tribune

“The group deserves the attention.” Allan Kozinn, New York Times

“Daniel Lippel is exceptional in his craft but he does not ham it up. The apotheosis of the modern guitarist..."
James Hanna, Guitar Review #131, Fall 2005


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