We're tremendously excited about this one: Cantaloupe Music's April release is David Lang's death speaks and features a rock-star lineup of Bryce Dessner (The National), Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), Owen Pallett (Final Fantasy) & Nico Muhly and is produced by Bryce Dessner.
From the composer, a bit of the thought that perpetuated this new indie rock song cycle: "Art songs have been moving out of classical music in the last many years. Indie rock seems to be the place where Schubert’s sensibilities now lie, a better match for direct story telling and intimate emotionality."
death speaks is the iTunes Classical Editors' Choice album this month
The album also features Lang's depart, commissioned by the hospital Raymond Poincaré in Garches, France. Deliberately written so that it cannot be performed live--the unending vocal parts are performed without spaces
for breath--the work was recorded by cellist Maya Beiser and vocalists Elizabeth Farnum, Katie Geissinger, Alexandra Montano and Alex Sweeton. The genesis of depart came when the doctors of Raymond Poincaré commissioned Italian artist Ettore Spalletti to design a comforting space where families and friends could come and say goodbye to their loved ones. "The hospital contacted Lang and British artist Scanner to design two musical soundscapes to accompany the designer's beautiful azure room". Of the music, Lang has commented, "Music goes into you. It bypasses all your normal protection mechanisms. It goes to the place in you that is not accessed with language or rationality… and I imagined the music in this morgue as having this horrible power to make people feel cold or make people break down, and I wanted to do something much more neutral, which was to say: here is an environment which does not tell you specifically how you are suppose to feel, but gives you permission to feel whatever you need to feel, in that moment. I wanted to make something that gave people permission to examine which way they wanted to go with their emotions." WNYC's Radiolab has profiled depart.