"An album that begins with quiet beauty disappearing into air ends with a reminder that there’s still much we can fight against."
Tempo (Vol 75)
SIDEBAND RECORDS 2
CD + Digital Download
Bagatellen / Air / Noema
Yukiko Sugawara / Tomoko Hemmi
Hans Thomalla’s music shines with a quiet charisma and tempered beauty that gets under your skin. 'Air' is a piece that deserves to be a new classic of the violin repertoire. Violinist Clara Lyon especially impresses with her gorgeous performance of the solo amongst other exemplary and intimate performances by Spektral Quartet, Yukiko Sugawara and Tomoko Hemmi on this welcome new label for contemporary music.
Liza Lim, Composer
This recording represents a remarkable compilation of Hans Thomalla’s compositions with strings or piano, works which are beautifully inventive at every turn. The ‘Bagatellen’ has us peering, almost voyeuristically, into fleeting, ravishing sound worlds; the delicate ‘Air’ is exquisite in the steady, unhurried persistence with which it takes the listener though an expansive landscape for the violin. The performances by Spektral Quartet, Clara Lyon, Tomoko Hemmi and Yukiko Sugawara are second-to-none, and represent interpretations we all wish for: ones that illuminate the subtleties and beauty of the music, reference recordings which are also at once incredibly personal.
Taimur Sullivan, Saxophonist, The Prism Quartet
The way of the future is for composers and artists to have a platform to be able to get their work out to the public through the most important part of the musical experience which is listening. The new Sideband Records label is a wonderful addition to Chicago’s vibrant music scene. And what a marvelous way to kick off, with an excellent recording featuring two of the most important and innovative musical figures in town - composer Hans Thomalla and the Grammy nominated Spektral Quartet!
Desirée Ruhstrat, Violinist, Lincoln Trio, Black Oak Ensemble
"The music of Hans Thomalla presents to us a fantastic and alchemical mixture of harmony and melody, pitch and noise, sound and silence. The stunning and beautifully performed pieces on this album, “Bagatellen”, ”Air”, and ”Noema” are captivating in the way they bring the sounds of the past into an altogether contemporary context. With this inaugural album, Sideband Records immediately establishes itself as an important new forum for contemporary music. This album is essential listening."
Christopher Wendell Jones, Composer, DePaul University
This first recording on Sideband (of many, I hope) offers what I'm looking for in sound: enough acoustic bloom to have the feel of a hall I'd like to be in, while the closeness of being on stage. Maybe with my feet dangling off the edge? The performances have the freedom of "no one is listening." Great.
Donald Nally, Conductor The Crossing