balaAEnescu Released March 2019
Alexander says: "Following on from the albums Luminitza and Maria T, I wanted to close the circle and complete the trilogy of albums directly arising from my dynamic interaction with Romanian music. One of the motivations behind this project is the fact that even though George Enescu’s genius as a complete musician is probably the most astonishing since Mozart, his work deserves to be even more widely known internationally"
THIS IS THE BALANESCU QUARTET
A 12-track album including re-interpretations of Kraftwerk classics and seminal works composed and selected by the Balanescu Quartet, one of the most visionary string quartets of our time. The collection of works illustrates the Balanescu Quartet's unique musical versatility and creativity.
The Balanescu Quartet's iconic reimagining of songs by pioneering German electronic band, Kraftwerk.
"Balanescu isn't alone in marrying contemporary sounds with a more sophisticated presentation, but he is the most imaginative" NME.
"Kraftwerk's electronic blueprints have made the jump to the rarefied chamber format with consummate elegance" The Guardian.
Maria T is a re-connection with Alexander Balanescu’s roots evoking the spirit of one of his earliest influences, the glamorous and iconic folk-singer Maria Tănase (1913-1963).
"Luminitza is one of those discs that follows me wherever I go....the sarcastic references to revolution and Romania's government are fine, but the deep cuts -- the title track and, above all, "Mother" -- plumb oceanic depths of emotion. This music never fails to affect me"
ANGELS AND INSECTS (Soundtrack)
"Director Philip Haas's intriguing adaptation of a novella by AS Byatt is not your average period drama. For one thing, the costumes, designs, music and camerawork steer clear of naturalism, highlighting both the modernity of the approach and the notion of humans as creatures to be observed dispassionately" Time Out
BYRNE | MORAN | LURIE | TORKE: Music For Strings
This album combines the American minimalists Robert Moran and Michael Torke and compositions by musicians more closely associated with World-Music or progressive Jazz: David Byrne and John Lurie.
MICHAEL NYMAN: String Quartets 1-3
"This is very accessible music, especially for one with a Minimalist pedigree, true to Nyman's goal of bringing good music to the masses. And played by the Balanescu Quartet, who specialize in expanding the repertoire of the four strings, it becomes an exhilarating ride."
KEVIN VOLANS: String Quartets 2 + 3
"Hunting:Gathering is a work that moves freely among African rhythmic and melodic shapes, contemporary Western harmonies and tone-shaping techniques, with distorted glimpses of Haydnesque Classicism"
The New York Times
JONATHAN GOLDSTEIN : Cyclorama
"On this album, the famous Balanescu Quartet is the centre of the ensemble, and is occasionally enlarged by pianos, saxophone, harp, percussion, flute, flugelhorn, soprano and organ, creating an incredible range of instrumental colours and sonorities"
The album is a mix of contemporary classical idioms which gradually present an unfolding story, like a cyclorama (the panoramic backdrop used in film & theatre), and was recorded at the Church of Saint Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, noted for its haunting acoustics.
Violinist Alexander Balanescu and singer Ada Milea transform a surrealistic play by a Romanian author, based on the Robinson Crusoe story, into a surrealistic mini opera. The world famous Balanescu Quartet is the musical partner in this bizarre story.
GAVIN BRYARS: The Last Days
"Gavin Bryars is one of today’s most arresting composers: unashamedly Romantic, wallowing in rich harmonies and textures with always a sideways glance at a mutated French tradition. Two string quartets dating from 1985 and 1990 surround The Last Days (1992), a series of five duos for two violins. The 1985 Quartet is luminously melancholic, graciously tonal......The Balanescu Quartet, particularly its leader, Alexander Balanescu, is ideally suited to this post-Romantic idiom" ClassicalMusic.com