Notes and Editorial Reviews
"Also a longtime member of the post-rock band Mice Parade, Lippel tackles a strictly modern repertoire on Abandoned Time, backed with sensitivity and verve by members of ICE, a partly local collective that’s emerged as one of the country’s boldest advocates of new music. Lippel plays acoustic guitar on most of the other compositions—by Mario Davidovsky, Kaija Saariaho, Du Yun, and Magnus Lindberg—and they’re just as demanding, filled with jagged lines, blistering rhythms, and explosions of energy." -- Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader [November 17, 2008]
"Abandoned Time gives us another chance to hear modern guitar polymath, Dan Lippel, this time backed by the stellar International Contemporary Ensemble. Lippel and ICE put their hearts into this project, delivering expressive, detailed, and precise interpretations. Standouts on the disc include Davidovsky's Festino for guitar, viola, cello, and bass, a playful piece full of rhythmic counterpoint and percussive guitar writing and string writing, and Saariaho's Adjo, a timbral tour de force featuring the exquisite soprano Tony Arnold. Pieces like these remind us that the guitar can still function as an expressive centerpiece in contemporary composition. And while this release is by no means "easy listening," those willing to give this cd multiple listens will surely reap the benefits." -- Ian Antonio, Guitar Review [Spring 2009]
"Recommended at the highest level to those into this repertoire, or wanting to work in this field, or just to scare the hell out of the neighbors." -- Stephen Kenyon, Classical Guitar [May 2009]
The unifying element in the repertoire on this CD is its unapologetic modernism -- this is music with a spiky, sinewy physicality that makes no concession to easy accessibility, and there is a good mix of pieces by established and emerging composers. The ensemble plays with exquisite precision, understanding, and fierce energy and engagement -- this is a group to watch out for. The sound is exceptionally clear, crisp, and well-defined. Stephen Eddins , All Music Guide, 2009 "The performances of the International Contemporary Ensemble are staggeringly cool. Lamper, American Record Guide, January/February 2009 The critically acclaimed New York and Chicago based International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) releases its first record fully produced, programmed, and curated by members of the ensemble, Abandoned Time, on New Focus Recordings. Featuring its guitarist Daniel Lippel, the recording highlights the group’s dynamic and visceral performing style in five bracing works that have become core parts of ICE’s repertoire, scored for various ensembles with electric, classical, and steel string acoustic guitar. Also appearing on a rarely heard work by Kaija Saariaho is the extraordinary contemporary music soprano Tony Arnold.