Kairos Records has announced the release of the new album by Helmut Lachenmann. “String Quartets” features three pieces for the instrumental setting mentioned in its title and highlights works from three different decades: While “Gran Torso” dates back to the early 70s and “Reigen seliger Geister” (the second String Quartet) to the 80s, the third String Quartet which goes by the name of “Grido” is a work of the new millenium. Even though there are more than 30 years dividing the oldest and youngest piece on the disc, Helmut Lachenmann has stressed that there is clearly a red thread running through it: “The three quartets provide a commentary on each other and the time in which they were composed.”, Helmut Lachenmann says, “Gran Torso has something of an investigation about it, of a broaching, of forays into critical new land. Reigen designates the sounds and techniques of two very different regions. Grido gains a new expressiveness– the land of music is freely praised and celebrated, although never without reflexive refraction or arousing disturbance.” Completing this musical feast is the inclusion of the renowned Arditti Quartet, making this yet another highlight in the catalogue of Kairos.
The CD of String Quartets by Helmut Lachenmann is therefore the first album of the Arditti Quartet on the Austrian label and features the new line-up of the ensemble: Irvine Arditti, Ashot Sarkissjan, Ralf Ehlers, and Lucas Fels. It is not the first time the Ardittis have worked with Helmut Lachenmann, however – their collaboration a constant in the world of contemporary composition. As if this weren't enough, Lachenmann's liner notes are three-dimensional and mouth-watering to say the least: “In the Choral at the end comes a sharp crack, a bark, before the music collapses.”