Beethoven & Hillborg: Chamber Works (2019)

Beethoven, Hillborg

Calder Quartet

Exclusives

Beethoven & Hillborg: Chamber Works is the first album on the Pentatone label from the Calder Quartet.  This recording, made at Zipper Hall at the Colburn School in Los Angeles features Jonathan Moerschel playing on a viola made by Gasparo da Salo in 1590 that is known as the “ex-Adam”. It is on generous loan from the Stradivari Society in Chicago.

Pentatone tells us "Hailed as one of the most exciting classical music groups of the United States, the Calder Quartet invites you on a journey from early to late Beethoven, passing through an exciting contemporary piece by Swedish composer Anders Hillborg along the way.

Beethoven’s Op. 131 string quartet, that concludes this album, is already a great adventure in its own right, with its seven movements full of fugal writing, harmonic explorations, variations and passages filled with operatic drama. Hearing this late masterpiece together with the much more classical, but equally lively, Op. 18 no. 3 quartet opens our ears to the exceptional richness of Beethoven’s musical universe.

Hillborg’s Kongsgaard Variations reveals unexpected sonic relationships to Beethoven’s variation technique, underlining the modernity of the older composer. This all leads to a program that is lively, layered and ravishingly beautiful."

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Calder Quartet

The Calder Quartet performs a broad range of repertoire at an exceptional level, always striving to channel and fulfil the composer’s vision. Already the choice of many leading composers to perform their works, the group’s distinctive approach is exemplified by a musical curiosity brought to everything they perform.

Winners of the prestigious 2014 Avery Fisher Career Grant, they are widely known for the discovery, commissioning, recording and mentoring of some of today’s best emerging composers (over 25 commissioned works to date). The group continues to work and collaborate with artists across musical genres, spanning the ranges of the classical and contemporary music world, as well as rock and film/tv soundtracks, and in venues ranging from museums to Carnegie and the Hollywood Bowl.

Inspired by innovative American artist Alexander Calder, the Calder Quartet’s desire to bring immediacy and context to the works they perform creates an artfully crafted musical experience. Recent and upcoming highlights include Lincoln Center, Metropolitan Museum of Art, multiple performances at Wigmore Hall, Barbican, Salzburg Festival, Donaueschingen Festival, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Tonhalle Zurich, IRCAM Paris, Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie, Centro Nacional de Difusión Musical Madrid, a residency at the Perth International Arts Festival and returns to Los Angeles’ Disney Hall and the Ojai Music Festival on a program curated by Peter Sellars. Their long list of collaborators include the Cleveland Orchestra, LA Philharmonic, Thomas Adès, Peter Eötvös, Barbara Hannigan, Audrey Luna, Johannes Moser, Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer and Danielle DeNiese.

The quartet has been featured in extremely popular TV shows such as the Late Show with David Letterman, the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic, the Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien, Late Night with Jimmy Kimmel, and the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.

In 2011 the Calder Quartet launched a non-profit dedicated to furthering its efforts in commissioning, presenting, recording, and education, collaborating with the Getty Museum, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, and the Barbican Centre in London. The Calder Quartet formed at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music and continued studies at the Colburn Conservatory of Music with Ronald Leonard, and at the Juilliard School, receiving the Artist Diploma in Chamber Music Studies as the Juilliard Graduate Resident String Quartet. The quartet regularly conducts master classes and has taught at the Colburn School, the Juilliard School, Cleveland Institute of Music, University of Cincinnati College Conservatory and USC Thornton School of Music.

Photo: courtesy of Pentatone in Press Release

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Beethoven & Hillborg: Chamber Works (2019)

Beethoven, Hillborg

Calder Quartet

Notes:

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NativeDSD sells only recordings that were originally recorded in DSD or DXD (352.8KHz PCM). The overwhelming majority of these recordings were edited and post processed in DXD, then converted (modulated) into DSD deliverable bit rates. NativeDSD acquires the label's original DXD edited master, and using Merging Technologies Album Publishing, creates a first generation DSD64, DSD128, and DSD256, as well as a DXD FLAC deliverable.  Additionally, on selected recordings, a 32bit PCM WAV file is extracted (the DXD PCM FLAC is 24 bits by format definition), and uses it to modulate a DSD512 using HQPlayer Pro.

The exception to the above are the few label recordings (Yarlung, Eudora, Just Listen etc.) that record in DSD, and do no PCM post processing mixing, level balancing, EQ etc. That's doable by restricting post processing to just editing, where only the edit transition interval (typically 100ms or less) is PCM converted, leaving the DSD music content unaltered when rendered. For those recordings, the DSD edited master (the actual recording master with edits) is used with HQPlayer Pro to re-modulate the missing DSD bitrates.

Why do any of this? It's to provide a DSD bitrate deliverable choice, allowing a customer to purchase the highest DSD bitrate their DAC will support.

It's correct that there's no additional music content information contained in the higher DSD bit rate from the original DSD bitrate. What's different is the uncorrelated modulation noise content placement in the frequency spectrum. When a DSD original file is converted to DXD (PCM), the inherent DSD modulation noise is removed through the decimation filtering, and re-inserted when modulated back to DSD. The modulation noise (again, uncorrelated) is the carrier part of the DSD bitstream modulation, and an inherent part of the DSD bit stream.

 

While the spectorial shape is the same regardless of the DSD bitrate, it's effective start and end points move an octave higher for every doubling of the DSD bitrate. For DSD64, the uncorrelated modulation noise is about -110dB at 20KHz, rising to about -50dB at 100KHz. For DSD512, the modulation noise is about -110dB at 160KHz, and -50dB at 800KHz. What this allows is for the customer's DAC to use gentler, more Gaussian shaped reconstruction filters, with far improved phase response.

 

 

Producer: Karel Bruggeman
Recording Engineer: Sergey Parfenov
Recording Location: Zipper Hall at the Colburn School, Los Angeles on May 22-25, 2018
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DSD 64

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PTC5186718: Beethoven & Hillborg: Chamber Works
01:19:03   Select quality & channels above
Tracks.
1.
Beethoven - String Quartet in D major op. 18 no. 3 - Allegro
Beethoven
00:08:18   Select quality & channels above
2.
Beethoven - String Quartet in D major op. 18 no. 3 - Andante con moto
Beethoven
00:08:08   Select quality & channels above
3.
Beethoven - String Quartet in D major op. 18 no. 3 - Allegro
Beethoven
00:02:57   Select quality & channels above
4.
Beethoven - String Quartet in D major op. 18 no. 3 - Presto
Beethoven
00:07:02   Select quality & channels above
5.
Hillborg - Kongsgaard Variations
Hillborg
00:14:07   Select quality & channels above
6.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Adagio
Beethoven
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7.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Allegro molto vivace
Beethoven
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8.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Allegro moderato
Beethoven
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9.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Andante
Beethoven
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10.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Presto
Beethoven
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11.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Adagio
Beethoven
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12.
Beethoven - String Quartet in C-sharp minor op. 131 - Allegro
Beethoven
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