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Colin Stetson announces new album SORROW, featuring Sarah Neufeld and Liturgy’s Greg Fox

on January 28, 2016, 11:40am

On April 8th, Colin Stetson will issue a new solo album titled SORROW. The LP follows last year’s Never Were the Way She Was, his collaborative release with Arcade Fire associate Sarah Neufeld, and marks his first solo record since 2013’s New History Warfare Vol. 3: To See More Light.

SORROW is a reinterpretation of Symphony No. 3 by Polish composer Henryk Gorecki and features three movements, including one that clocks in at nearly 30 minutes. It includes guest contributions from Neufeld and Liturgy drummer Greg Fox, and, according to Stetson, is said to pull from “the world of black metal, early electronic music, from my own body of solo saxophone music.”

In a statement, Stetson noted the significance of Symphony No. 3, and how “dedicated” he was to learning it, inside and out. “We all have those moments when we experience a piece of music that transforms us, and this was one of those moments for me,” he said.

“Over the years, I went on to listen to this record countless times, always determined to absorb every instance of it, to know it throughout and fully. And this dedication to a thorough knowledge of the piece eventually gave way to a need to perform it.”

As a preview, Stetson has shared an album trailer and an excerpt of the first movement, which features his sister, Megan Stetson, a mezzo-soprano. Check out both below.

Read Steton’s full statement on the LP:

“We all have those moments when we experience a piece of music that transforms us, and this was one of those moments for me.  Over the years, I went on to listen to this record countless times, always determined to absorb every instance of it, to know it throughout and fully.  And this dedication to a thorough knowledge of the piece eventually gave way to a need to perform it.

“The concept was simple, and true to the original score.  I haven’t changed existing notation, but rather have worked with altering instrumentation, utilizing a group consisting heavily of woodwinds, synthesizers, and electric guitars, as well as retaining an element of the orchestral in a string section of violins and cellos, which features prominent and decorated Canadian musicians Sarah Neufeld (Arcade Fire, Bell Orchestre) and Rebecca Foon (Saltland, Esmerine).

My approach was “additive”, in that I imagined certain sounds or parts, though not present in the original, were (to me) extensions of the emotional core of the piece.  For example, the instrumentation is rounded out by the most extreme of those sonic/timbral/musical additions, the drum set.  Performed inimitably here by NYC drummer/percussionist, Greg Fox (Liturgy, Guardian Alien, Z’s).  My background and education in classical concert music is here, as well as a focus on group improvisation. The arrangement draws heavily from the world of black metal, early electronic music, and from my own body of solo saxophone music.”

SORROW Artwork:

colin stetson sorrow album Colin Stetson announces new album SORROW, featuring Sarah Neufeld and Liturgys Greg Fox

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