Siggi String Quartet – Stara – The Music of Halldór Smárason (2020)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 48:57 minutes | 1,56 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Sono Luminus
The music of composer Halldór Smárason includes liberal use of silences and held notes that are modulated in some way so as to give them an edge. It sounds a bit electronic even when it is not, and here on his debut album, as if to emphasize the point, Smárason includes a piece for guitar and electronics, Skúlptúr 1, that does not depart strongly from the sound of the other acoustic works on the album. (It does depart conceptually: there is supposed to be an “alarm” from the electronics if the guitarist does not jump through certain hoops.) One wonders what this is like in performance, but it does not happen here. The structure of each work is similar, but it takes on variation according to the instrumentation of each work, with the characteristic texture accomplished differently according to this variable. Smárason probably will not be to the taste of those with no interest in avant-garde music, but this music is clear and accessible. It is also substantially enhanced by the engineering of the audiophile Sono Luminus label, an ideal partner to Smárason. The venue is a custom-built auditorium at the Ísafjörður Music School in Smárason’s Icelandic hometown, and it brings out every detail of the sonic modulations the composer specifies. Smárason is quite young, and this sounds like the beginning of a brilliant career.
Halldór Smárason (b. 1989):
1 Draw + Play
2 Stop Breathing
4 Skúlptúr 1