Release Date 07/09/2021
Today, Sony Classical announce the exclusive signing of the bold, multi-genre, Grammy Award-winning string ensemble, ATTACCA QUARTET, with the release of two albums this year that embody their redefinition of what a string quartet can be. Real Life, a vibrant album that transcends musical boundaries, is out July 9th and available now for preorder. The group’s momentum will continue well into 2021, lining up a second album later this year featuring music by Philip Glass, Arvo Pärt as well as several Renaissance composers – details coming soon.
Melding the worlds of classical and electronic on the forthcoming album, REAL LIFE, today, the Attacca Quartet premiere the album’s lead single and video "Electric Pow Wow Drum.” A powerfully euphoric take on The Halluci Nation’s fan-favorite anthem, the string collective reimagines the track with regal strings wrapped around a tribal stomp – listen and watch the video here.
For Real Life, Attacca Quartet notably worked in the studio with Grammy Award-winning composer, multi-instrumentalist, producer, and Snarky Puppy bandleader Michael League. On the album, the group—Domenic Salerni [violinist], Amy Schroeder [violinist], Nathan Schram [violist], and Andrew Yee [cellist]—re-envision, reshape, and reimagine tracks originally recorded by some of today’s most influential artists in electronic music, including Flying Lotus, Squarepusher, Louis Cole, Anne Müller, Daedelus, and Mid-Air Thief. Many of these producers, as well as guest collaborator TOKiMONSTA, in turn, contributed new layers to Attacca Quartet’s interpretations. Emphasizing the ability to perform all the tracks live as a four-piece, they implemented distortion, plucked and scraped the strings, tapped, and went so far as to reverse the tape itself.
“We thought about what the dream album could be that we hadn’t been able to make until we got this opportunity” says Schram, “and this idea just started to flower; to bring all the different electronic music we listen to, into our string quartet world and to collaborate with a lot of different musicians, particularly Mike League, while using all the possibilities of music technology to make the biggest string quartet album we could. We all dug really deep into our interests and abilities and created an amazing, experimental, rocking, touching album that is Real Life.”
Attacca Quartet manage to perfect the confluence of classical and electronic with all of the magic of both respective halves intact on Real Life. The musicians intimately amplify the emotional resonances of Flying Lotus’s “Remind U” by weaving in cinematic violin as TOKiMONSTA adds her quintessential club beats and samples. Then, on “Drifting Circles,” they take Anne Müller’s template and widen the scope with wintry violin bouncing off the icy production. Additionally, they serve up two brand new bespoke tracks, namely “Xetaka 1” (feat. Squarepusher) written by Squarepusher and “Holding Breadth” (feat. Daedelus) by Daedelus. Full tracklist below.
“It’s a celebration of collaboration, and how technology can increase human connection,” says Salerni of Real Life.
“What with today’s opportunities for mixing art forms, mixing genres and expanding the horizons of classical music in composition and in playing - it’s a really exciting time to be a musician.” explains Schroeder.
“We never think: ‘Can we do it?’,” exclaims Yee. “We just want to do it, and so we give ourselves the goal.”
On Real Life, Attacca Quartet most certainly accomplish that goal of successfully blending musical worlds and breaking down barriers of genre, in the process creating an imitable sound all their own. For Attacca Quartet, they’re only just beginning their music exploration.
“The Attacca Quartet uniquely combine infinite creativity with uncompromising quality,” says Per Hauber, President of Sony Classical, of the exclusive signing. “The first two projects for this year already promise to be very exciting. Everyone at the label is extremely enthusiastic and, we look forward to working with them!”
“We’ve always loved to dream big and imagine the grandest expressions a string quartet can make,”says Attacca Quartet. “Partnering with Sony Classical has inspired us to think even bigger than before and to fully realize our dreams, both our most personal statements and most outlandish.”
More info about Attacca Quartet:
Formed in 2003, Attacca Quartet present a new paradigm for string quartets in the 21st century. The New York string collective—Domenic Salerni [violinist], Amy Schroeder [violinst], Nathan Schram [violist], and Andrew Yee [cellist]—have performed on six acclaimed albums, including Caroline Shaw: Orange. For the latter, they garnered the 2020 GRAMMY® Award in the category of “Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance.” Receiving widespread critical acclaim from New York Times, Noisey, and more, The Nation notably praised how the Attacca Quartet “lives in the present aesthetically, without rejecting the virtues of the musical past.”
Not to mention, they’ve performed at Carnegie Hall Neighborhood Concerts, New York Philharmonic’s Nightcap Series, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and at Lincoln Center White Lights Festival and Miller Theatre with Caroline Shaw. Residencies include stints as Julliard’s Graduate Resident String Quartet and Quartet in Residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Plus, they’ve touched down for performances on four continents.
In addition, the musicians of the quartet have collaborated with acclaimed artists such as Björk and James Blake and the quartet even appears in the popular video game Red Dead Redemption 2. They were also featured on the soundtrack for Amazon’s Mozart in the Jungle (2016). With 2021’s REAL LIFE, they add a classic twist to a modern sound, defying genres and eras all at once.
“Electric Pow Wow Drum" by The Halluci Nation
"Real Life" by Louis Cole
"Why?" by Mid-Air Thief
"Clock Catcher" by Flying Lotus
"Remind U (feat. TOKiMONSTA)" by Flying Lotus
"Pilgrim Side Eye" by Flying Lotus
"Xetaka 1 (feat. Squarepusher)" by Squarepusher
"Holding Breadth (feat. Daedelus)" by Daedelus
"Drifting Circles" by Anne Müller
"More Love Less Hate" by Louis Cole