Great Mention in Today’s Star-Ledger!

18 Dec

Thanks to Ronni Reich for the nice mention in today’s Star-Ledger!

2Cellos, a duo of twenty-somethings from Croatia, gets it right. They made their mark in 2011 with a YouTube video for “Smooth Criminal” that received more than 5 million hits in less than three months and quickly found themselves touring with Elton John and recording for Sony.

The conservatory-trained musicians mined their instruments to recreate wailing voices and percussive sounds and let it rip as they took on Guns ‘N Roses and U2.

Choices among groups like 2Cellos had a few points in common — most notably, the King of Pop (who has also had a full symphony performing in his honor last year).

If “Billie Jean” on the oboe played by Threeds wind trio doesn’t sound quite as natural as “Smooth Criminal” on the cello, it’s hard not to smile at the bass-clarinet beat.

On “Unraveled,” a self-released album funded through the website Kickstarter, the group — two oboes and English horn, with guest artists for various tracks — sounds even better with Björk’s expansive ballad “Joga,” trip-hop vibe added via vocal percussion and beatboxing. The slimmer texture lays bare the work’s framework, making it new for fans.

Also taken up by Threeds and other groups is Radiohead. It’s not the most surprising leap for classically-oriented listeners and performers, given the complexity of their songs, but to pull it off is still an accomplishment.


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