D/B Recommended: Alarm Will Sound @ Philharmonie Berlin | Monday, 21.03.2011 | Berlin Premiere!

Alarm Will Sound is a 20-member band of intelligent classical crossover. Fresh virtuoso spirit, critically acclaimed as “a triumph of ensemble playing”. Tonight they play at Berlin’s MaerzMusik.

[audio:Alarm Will Sound – Jitterbug mecanique.mp3]Similar to the german Ensemble Modern or the London Sinfonietta this young american musicians stir up the classical music scene by interpreting works of Wolfgang Rihm and Aphex Twin within the same programme. This might not be revolutionary anymore, but it is great fun, well done!

For decades classical avantgarde has been the antipode to modern jazz and electronics. This is still the case more often than not, but in the US it seems to be a recent fashion to bridge that gap. Not that this idea is new, just think of Weill or Bernstein. Foremost, though, ensembles as Alarm Will Sound stand in the tradition of Frank Zappa, who has been a life long fanatic of Edgar Varèse and whose late works he brought to stage with the Ensemble Modern on “The Yellow Shark”.

So Alarm Will Sound’s Berlin should not be seen as the future of classical music, it is just a perpetuation of the albeit wonderful niche of intelligent young chamber musicians with a passion for IDM and electronics. If you are into that niche, this concert is a must. On March 24th, the concert’s recording will be broadcasted on DeutschlandRadio Kultur.

Alarm Will Sound | Mt. Saint Michel (Aphex Twin)

Alarm Will Sound may also be heard on five recordings. a/rhythmia, their latest release on Nonesuch is an eclectic mix of rhythmically complex music by Benedict Mason, Michael Gordon, György Ligeti, Mochipet, Johannes Ciconia, Conlon Nancarrow, Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Josquin des Prez, and Autechre.

“Concerts with Alarm Will Sound have been described as “equal parts exuberance, nonchalance and virtuosity”. Most of the musicians from this experimental ensemble met one another as students at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester (USA), an elite school for classical music instruction. To begin with they specialised in contemporary composers such as David Lang, Anthony Gatto and Steve Reich. Later they mastered improvisation, jazz and world music and staged new music performances. Finally they added the arrangement of electronic music for acoustic instruments to their areas of expertise.”


Alarm Will Sound  LIVE

Monday, 21 March 2011 | 20:00 CET
Kammermusiksaal der Philharmonie | Herbert-von-Karajan-Straße 1  | 10785 Berlin

Website | Deutschlandradio | MaerzMusik