Monday, November 17, 2008


Look okay at some point I promise that I'm going to stop making every single post I write about these New Amsterdam people, but for right now you're just going to have to deal, because you really have to go see the show that Judd Greenstein, the Suge Knight-style mogul behind the NewAm record label, is putting on Wednesday night for the MATA Interval Festival. Featuring, natch, a pair of blazing virtuosi from his roster. 8 p.m., ISSUE Project Room (232 3rd St, Brooklyn), $10 (cheap!). Nadia Sirota, the violist on everybody's shortlist for World's Greatest Human, will be playing pieces she commissioned from Marcos Balter, the aforementioned Greenstein, and Nico Muhly. I'm listening to the Balter right now off of his webpage, and it is tight (a moto perpetuo for Walter Fähndrich fans?), as is the Greenstein. The Muhly etudes on the program fit in very well with Judd's stated theme of "The NEW New Virtuosity," since they collectively sound like a brightly colored bag of aural jellybeans until you realize that they actually make quite extreme and, yes, NEW demands of the poor brave fiddler. This Andrew McKenna Lee person costarring, click on that link for a heaping paella of free mp3s composed and performed by Lee on acoustic & electric guitars. He does the classical guitar virtuoso thing you know and secretly love, but he does the art-rock guitar hero thing too, and I'm guessing this should be pretty hot live. There's a lot of flash here, the sort of thing that usually gets pooh-pooh'd in new music circles. It's nice that brain is favored over brawn in this little world, but let's not forget that the greatest virtuosi have always had, as the T-shirt says, ALL THIS AND BRAINS TOO. So yeah! Go to the MATA thing. You can read what the performers have to say about it, here (Sirota) and here (Lee)—definitely worth a read—and Judd's statement, again, is here.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Daniel,

Thanks for the nice words. Hope to see you at the concert tomorrow night.
Marcos Balter

November 18, 2008 at 5:53 PM  

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