This recording introduced me to the young, fantastically visceral Attacca Quartet of whom I’ve become an ardent fan, catching as many of their New York performances as my multiple careers permit. It’s something to see these kids all but turning themselves inside out in their enthusiasm for whatever they’re performing: especially the work of living composers to which they’re particularly committed. And with their latest NY concert being devoted to the quartet works of America’s éminence grise, John Adams, it seemed fitting to revisit this vitalic survey. There’s a corybantic element to a lot of Adams’ work that the group imbues with the appropriate raw heft, while still providing the delicacy and insight of the more discursive, exploratory pieces: all the more impressive given the group’s youth.
If you’re in the New York area on Sunday, April 4, 2017, do yourself a favor and catch this superb ensemble at National Sawdust in Brooklyn. Failing that, put on your dancing shoes and groove to this kinetic, vibrant album.