International Record Review on VIDA

My quartet, VIDA has just had another lovely review, this time from International Record Review for our debut CD recording. We’re off on tour again very shortly in Germany and the UK so please do have a look at our dates on the VIDA website.

International Record Review praise VIDA Guitar Quartet’s debut recording “Love, the Magician” BGS118.

“Their range of timbres and colouration is so broad that one really does forget that there are four identical instruments. The excellent arrangements of Falla’s El Amor brujo by Eden, using techniques such as rapid rubbing of the strings and various scordaturas, approximates the orchestral colours of Falla’s work, assisted by the players’ refined tonal control. Reducing the work to just four guitars brings a level of intimacy to the work, particularly in the poignant ‘The Fisherman’s Story’. Ashford’s arrangement of El sombrero de tres picos is well conceived. As the informative booklet notes elucidate, Diaghilev persuaded Falla to revise his pantomime as a ballet, which was premiered in London in 1919 with sets and costumes designed by Picasso, choreographed by Léonide Massine. Most outstanding are the tonal colours in ‘The Corregidor’.”

“William Kanengiser’s arrangement of the Suite from Carmen does not have the orchestral textures that are so appealing in the Falla arangements. Although the Vida’s playing is measured and understated, it has all the necessary bravura for ‘The Toreador’s Song’ and builds to an exhilarating climax in the ‘Gypsy Song’. Their dynamic control, which ranges from an almost inaudible pianissimo to ranging fortissimos, is impressive. The arrangement of Turina’s impressionistic Oración del Toreo provides a contrast of atmosphere, with its mix of Spanish and jazz-like rhythms.”

“The Vida Guitar Quartet’s ensemble throughout is exemplary and seemingly achieved with ease … their blending of tone is remarkably unified. The recording is well balanced and natural, with a warm tone quality and intimate clarity. This is a thoroughly enjoyable disc.”

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