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    Eighth Blackbird – Hand Eye

    September 7th, 2016

    Eighth Blackbird - Hand Eye

    Formed in 1996, contemporary classical ensemble Eighth Blackbird “combines the finesse of a string quartet, the energy of a rock band and the audacity of a storefront theater company.” Their latest album, Hand Eye, is comprised of six instrumental pieces written by members of a composers’ collective called Sleeping Giant and influenced by pieces of contemporary visual art. Inspired by the artwork of Astrid Bowlby and Edward Gorey, Timo Andres’ “Checkered Shade” starts off with a simple piano-led orchestral riff with lots of minimal pinging and moods alternating between light and heavy. Sections of low rumbles and sparse strings lead into a mellower mass, which gets cut by an unexpected acoustic explosion, finally ending on a super mellow note.

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    Eighth Blackbird – Filament

    August 22nd, 2016

    Eighth Blackbird - Filament

    Formed in 1996, contemporary classical ensemble Eighth Blackbird “combines the finesse of a string quartet, the energy of a rock band and the audacity of a storefront theater company.” Their album Filament was inspired by and a tribute to composer Phillip Glass. The first 19 minutes of the CD is taken up by Bryce Dessner’s “Murder Ballades,” a collection of seven traditional murder ballad-inspired tracks full of baroque chamber pop with elements of folk and blues. The proceedings range in mood from frolicking and galloping to erratic and pensive with occasional stiff acoustic punches.

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