With Session 012, Oakland’s Town Quartet premieres more unpublished work from 19th-century Czech composer Anton Reicha, performing his Quatuor Scientifique No. 11 (Allegro moderato). A pioneering music theorist and academic from Beethoven's time, Reicha explored the application of mathematics and philosophical concepts within his compositions. Much of Reicha’s musical work was considered too unconventional and radical by the standards of his day, which contributed to his being relatively unknown when compared to some of his classical-era contemporaries. The Town Quartet aims to bring some of this more obscure work to the public. Like Q. Scientifique No. 7, the eleventh movement (of twelve) reveals another of Reicha’s fugal experimentations, this one being based upon the theme from the String Quartet Opus 20 No. 5 in F minor by one of Reicha’s mentors during his days in Vienna: Joseph Haydn.
In Owl Mountain Session 010, we introduced Oakland’s very own eclectic Town Quartet, featured in Matt Montgomery’s arrangement of Physical Suicide Deterrent System Project’s avant-grunge ballad “Geology”. With PSDSP frontman Eli Carlton-Pearson on acoustic guitar, the quartet of Mia Bella D’Augelli and Corey Mike (violins), Jacob Hansen-Joseph (viola), and Lewis Patzner (cello) gave us a rare blend of classical music and grunge rock, unplugged. The result: a beautifully raw sound with soaring intensity.
For Session 011, the Town Quartet switches gears, returning to more “traditional" string quartet literature. In this case, however, they dive into history to bring us new treasure: the world’s premiere performance and recording of “Quatuor Scientifique”, a rare unpublished piece from Czech-born composer Anton Reicha (1770-1836). A contemporary of Beethoven’s, Reicha was an innovative music theorist and composer whose approaches to rhythm and tonality were advanced beyond his time.
Movement 7 of his Quatuor Scientifique is a four-part fugue that explores the famous theme from Mozart’s “Haffner” symphony. Though brief, the piece unfolds into a complete thought full of rich layers that give equal voice to each member of the quartet. It gracefully ebbs and flows through many changes of texture and light, finally building to a bold, assertive organ-like finish. Please enjoy!
Previously, we brought you avant-grunge rockers PHYSICAL SUICIDE DETERRENT SYSTEM PROJECT's "Geology" for Owl Mountain Sessions 009. Session 010 revisits "Geology" with an acoustic cross-genre interpretation arranged by Matt Montgomery (Versus Them) featuring the TOWN QUARTET, an Oakland, CA string quartet.
PSDSP front man Eli Carlton-Pearson unplugs for this new performance of “Geology", but rocks the grunge nonetheless. Where fellow PSDSP band members Brian Wilkerson's dark melodic electric bass and Michael Pinkham's shimmering drums usually comprise the additional voices in the Bay-Area trio’s “Geology”, composer and musical polymath Matt Montgomery swaps in the Town Quartet with a skillfully layered arrangement for two violins, viola, and cello. The result maintains the original composition’s beautiful thunder and heaviness—provided by Jacob Hansen-Joseph’s viola and Lewis Patzner’s cello—while soaring into otherworldly atmospheres through the full range of octaves on Corey Mike and Mia Bella D’Augelli’s violins.
Collaboration, a convergence of ideas, classical instruments exploring modern expressions. Enjoy Owl Mountain Sessions 010 “Geology” for all this and more!
“Geology” Arranged for string quartet by Matt Montgomery www.mattmontgomery.com
PSDSP - Physical Suicide Deterrent System Project www.psdspmusic.com Eli Carlton-Pearson - guitar, vocals Brian Wilkerson - bass, vocals Michael Pinkham - drums
TOWN QUARTET www.townquartet.com Corey Mike - violin Mia Bella D’Augelli - violin Jacob Hansen-Joseph - viola Lewis Patzner - cello