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Gramophone Magazine reviews Sam Adams' album "Current"

Excerpted from review by Thomas May


A most welcome addition to the slim Samuel Adams discography, ‘Current’ gathers three chamber music works from the past decade, two of them from the ‘before times’ and the other directly reflecting the experience of the pandemic. The integration of acoustic and electronic sounds to generate music that poignantly plugs into the zeitgeist justifies the album’s multivalent title. Adams shows himself to be among the most interesting composers of the millennial generation in his negotiation of the tensions that shape and define his musical narratives: between directness and implication, silence and resonance, emotion and its aftermath.


Conor Hanick, the pianist on Violin Diptych and a like-minded colleague for whom Adams composed his remarkable piano concerto No Such Spring (2022), likewise defies gravity in Shade Studies (2014). Written as a tribute to Terry Riley, the piece unfolds as a dialogue between solo piano and electronic samples resonating from a speaker tucked beneath the lid of the instrument. Through hymnal cadences that pirouette into reverent silence, Hanick lifts us into a state of raptly attentive contemplation and clarifying simplicity.


Release Date: September 8, 2023 on Other Minds Records

Catalog Number: OM-1040-2

Composer: Samuel Adams

Performer: Conor Hanick, Karen Gomyo, Spektral Quartet

Ensemble: Spektral Quartet




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