The Kronos Quartet commissioned a string quartet from Italian composer
Roberto Paci Dalò, whose multifarious activities include music/theatre
projects, an opera, installations. radio art works, playing clarinet,
ethnomusicological study and a film about Viennese actionist Hermann Nitsch.
His wide ranging of collaborations have included encounters with British
turntablist Philiup Jeck and American composer James Tenney. The mesostic
John Cage dedicated to Dalò is printed on the CD cover. It locates
Dalò in two worlds - nature and "the musical one". Here,
electronic beams pulsate obsessively between stereo channels with occasional
squelches of sonic blur. Elsewhere, bowed and pucked string shapes are
woven into the signal's crisscrossing throb. Throughout, ostensibly electronic
sounds are on the verge of disclosing their real origin in acoustic instrumentation
or the natural environment - a common phenomenon in current composition,
but Dalò holds his balance on that threshold exceptionally well.
The closing fade is unadulterated birdsong.
Julian Cowley, The Wire, June 2004