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August 21, 2013

Bryce Dessner and Kronos Quartet Collaborate on ‘Aheym’ - Dessner’s Recorded Debut as a Composer

We’re pleased to announce that Anti- Records will release Aheym: Kronos Quartet Plays Music by Bryce Dessner on November 5, 2013. Bryce Dessner, composer & guitarist from The National and Clogs, makes his recorded debut as composer on the album, which features four original compositions by Dessner performed by Kronos, as well as an appearance by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus.

Kronos Quartet

Dessner and the quartet first crossed paths when Kronos founder David Harrington approached Dessner about writing a piece for the quartet’s performance at the Celebrate Brooklyn! festival at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park in 2009. The ensuing piece, Aheym (meaning “homeward” in Yiddish), was informed by the stories of Dessner’s Jewish immigrant grandparents who settled near the park and, as the pair’s collaboration grew, became the album’s title track.

Aheym also includes a performance dedicated to Laurence Neff, Kronos Quartet’s lighting designer of 25 years (Tenebre); a composition influenced by obscure Czech viola da gamba performers Irena and Vojtěch Havel (Little Blue Something); and Tour Eiffel, a setting of a poem by Chilean poet Vicente Huidobro that was originally commissioned by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus (which perform the track on Aheym alongside Kronos Quartet) at the suggestion of Dessner’s close friend, composer Nico Muhly.

Best known for his work with Brooklyn-based rock group The National, Bryce Dessner is also a founding member of the group Clogs and founder/curator of Cincinnati’s acclaimed MusicNOW Festival. Graduating from Yale University with a master’s degree in music, Dessner serves as a composer-in-residence at Muziekgebouw Frits Philips in Eindhoven, Netherlands, produced the Red Hot AIDS charity compilation Dark Was the Night with his brother and The National bandmate Aaron, curated the Crossing Brooklyn Ferry music festival for the Brooklyn Academy of Music (also with Aaron) and has performed alongside Steve Reich, Nico Muhly, Sufjan Stevens, Radiohead’s Johnny Greenwood and many others.

Aheym: Kronos Quartet Plays Music by Bryce Dessner

1. Aheym
2. Little Blue Something
3. Tenebre
4. Tour Eiffel

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