The new CD of this quartet is overloaded with gems. Including Luxembourger Olivier Sliepen, it starts like in a birdcage: the flattering quartet of Tristan Keuris (1946 – 1996) introducing the program, and also Luxembourg composer Camille Kerger is part of it with his composition Schneelicht – bebend weiss – a work that uses the lyricism of the saxophone with long, singing lines, as well as staccato possibilities. The work, inspired by a poem by Nico Helminger, is visual with intensifying and decreasing movements of snow and mostly high sounds that evoke empty landscapes, in which the snow plays with the agitated, exaggerated light. Flowing light and ostinato – light movements also form the core element of Merlijn Twaalfhoven’s entertaining composition 1 Gram of Time.
By far more complex, is the procedure of Hugues Dufourt who explores the sound spectrum of the saxophone in a refined game of sound colors. This refined and sacred world is radically disrupted by Iannis Xenakis. It’s an eight-minute scream with shrill, penetrating sounds that frighten ear and soul. After so much hopelessness we enter the wonderfully sensitive moods of Dutch composer Marijn Simons. The work inspired by Miro’s painting of the same title first confronts us with the mellow background of the painting before transforming the gentle rhythms of its figures, whose movements are tamed by a caring sun, into sound. ...
Franco Donatoni’ s piece Rasch, dedicated to the Rascher Quartet, represents the breathless rush of our time and seems to literally fall into water, washed away by Ian Wilson’s Atlantica. Here the gram of time forms part of the infinity of oceans and lost times that Wilson imagines as endless and magnificent.
Those contrasts, those wonderful transitions, are the main characteristics of this CD and prove the knowledge of repertoire and intelligent sensibility of how the four musicians of the Amstel Quartet selected the programme of this CD.
After the previous CDs that left us with the greatest enthusiasm, the Amstel Quartet presents its masterpiece with this recording. Totally detached from the score, deeply feeling the music itself, the four musicians present a program here that’s of a quality, both in terms of compositions and interpretation, beyond discussion. This is the case in a dark Xenakis composition, as well as in the trembling opus of Camille Kerger: the four saxophonists amaze with sheer endless technical abilities, a grandiose musical imagination and a performance that’s always highly expressive. What ABQ is in the world of strings, Amstel Quartet could become in the world of the saxophone.
Amstel Quartet thrills with “Classical Zen”
Review of our concert
Die Rheinlandpfalz about our concert in Landau on September 28th
Wagners Ring in 20 Minuten - genial
Balm for the soul ... La vie en rose even is a revelation
A real Caribbean feast for the ears!
5 out of 5 stars for Sax avec Elan! in Elsevier!
Sax avec Elan! Album of the Week on SinfiniMusic!
En Route review Sax & Elan
Review 'Sax Avec Elan' op Musicframes.nl
Recensie 'Sax avec Elan' in Trouw
Recensie Klassiek Zaken 'Sax Avec Elan'
Recensie NRC 'Sax avec Elan'
Recensie Telegraaf 'Sax avec Elan'
Review Gaudeamus concert[s]
Mit dem Saxophon unterwegs in ungewohnte Klangwelten
Elan & Sax
Concert at Sarnia Concert Association, Canada
Amstel Tracks NOW! review
recensie: ZWART LICHT.. . Leeroy draait door
gecertificeerde zuurstofflessen - certified oxygen cylinders
Alles ist Saxophon
review Amstel Tracks NOW! in Opus Klassiek
review Amstel Tracks NOW! in Mania
LUXEMBURGER WORT - Une mosaïque musicale étincelante
"Amstel Quartet: The best saxophone quartet in the world." (AVRO Radio)
Met vier saxen naar Hengelo (O)?
CD review Amstel Raga (in German) Pizzicato
CD review Amstel Raga (in German)
CD review Amstel Raga (Dutch with translation)
CD review Amstel Raga (Dutch)
Amstel Peijl Review
Review Amstel Peijl album
review in FanfareMag
Review Amstel Peijl CD
Party im "Römerbad"
This is how a saxophone quartet should sounds like
CD Feature/ Amstel Quartet: "Amstel Peijl"
Who needs violins, harpischords, organs, and pianos?
ASQ, the Brand! - 1 Gram of Time - Supersonic Award
When the Star Reaches Out for You - Baltica - Supersonic Award
Incredibly beautifully played Prélude, Fugue et Variation
Recommended Recordings - Straight Lines - Amstel Quartet
In Total Admiration of the Amstel Quartet - Amstel Tracks - Excellentia Award
Amstel’s sensitive dynamic control and energetic sense of ensemb