AARON JAY KERNIS (b.1960): String Quartet No. 3 “River”, CLAUDE DEBUSSY (1862-1918): String Quartet in G Minor, Op. 10.
Catalogue Number: 07V058
Label: Sono Luminus
Description: Kernis' 3rd Quartet is a large work - about 40 minutes - in a roughly symmetrical five-movement form. The subtitle 'River' stands for processes of flux and change, in the literary sources that influenced the composer while writing the work, and also in the musical processes at work, as well as to some extent some 'flowing', or 'reflecting' aquatic imagery. The piece is freely rhapsodic, in the composer’s customary brand of extended tonality, with harmonies chosen more for colour and organic flow than for formal relationships. The first movement is tough and dramatic, mirrored by the contrasting deep-flowing, richly sonorous last; the second movement is active, its mirror, lyrical; the central movement 'Mirrored Surface - Flux - Reflections - is the longest, and epitomises the work's message of change, with rapid, drastic and intense contrasts of character. Jasper String Quartet.