Neue Zeitschrift für Musik, Empfehlung
This is deep, profound and at times uncompromisingly personal music, but it makes for a riveting listening experience and fully justifies Larcher’s growing reputation as a composer of real individuality and mastery of his craft.
Marc Rochester, International Record Review
Larcher is an unpredictable, freethinking composer, who has set aside the modernist strictures that have long governed Central European music. … “Böse Zellen” is riveting from start to finish – a sweat-inducing drama in instrumental form. All the works receive immaculate, strongly felt performances.
Alex Ross, The New Yorker
His communicative music is one of this century’s wonders. The CD’s title is borrowed from a recent work for string quartet… It’s a work of haunting landscapes and dreams, stylistically disparate but fused by the composer’s astonishing ear and quizzical attitude to traditional forms. Classical music’s past looms larger still in “Böse Zellen”, a concerto of sorts for piano and orchestra, alternately teasing disturbing. … “Still”, for viola and chamber orchestra, plays its own imaginative games with music’s history. Both pieces feature the Munich Chamber Orchestra and the conductor Dennis Russell Davies, ideal for adventurous repertoire.
Geoff Brown, The Times
This world premiere recording of his String Quartet No 3, minutely detailed in its multiplying patterns and crazily interweaving motifs, shows him at his best. Inspired by the White Mountains of western Crete, it glistens with strange effects and bursts of melody. … Two other contrasting works feature pianist Fellner and viola player Kashkashian. All told, a bracing, exhilarating way to discover Larcher.
Fiona Maddocks, The Observer
Larcher’s music is distinctly different from that of any of his near contemporaries. As these three works from the last decade show, Larcher ranges very widely in his influences, and most often well away from the mainstream of European music in the last 30 years.
Andrew Clements, The Guardian
At the heart of Thomas Larcher’s music is an intriguing conflict. He has a fabulous ear for unusual sonorities, which he fashions into surprisingly logical narratives; yet at pivotal moments he uses a more traditional, tonal, almost Romantic expression. … Like many composers today he attempts to reconcile a modernist aesthetic with an older musical heritage, creating a fascinating mix. … Böse Zellen, in particular, is a truly original work, vigorously performed and captured in flawless sound.
Neil Smith, BBC Music Magazine
The music of Tirolean composer Thomas Larcher is hauntingly evocative. Still for viola and chamber orchestra refers both to the idea of stillness and to a frozen video image that can reveal unsuspected details. It is unexpected and welcome to discover a viola pieces not only not elegiac, but in which the viola initiates two tremendous escalations of intensity. Kim Kashkashian declaims the solo part with the utmost eloquence, backed to the hilt by the crack band. … ECM´s recording – a pleasure in itself – captures the players’ every nuance.
Carlos Maria Solare, The Strad
Thomas Larcher´s Viola Concerto and his extraordinary String Quartet No. 3 shows that the Austrian composer can write for strings in a way that materially broadens musical horizons by arming these works to the teeth with angular expressive intensity and a myriad of sonic artifacts. …
The Third Quartet is a masterpiece of invention and design that comes alive as the players, both singly and together, slink into and inhabit Larcher´s musical dimensions and expanding sense of time.
Der 1963 geborene Österreicher Thomas Larcher ist … eine der prägnantesten kompositorischen Persönlichkeiten innerhalb der europäischen Musikszene. Larchers Stilistik kennt durchaus zitathafte Allusionen – an Modelle und Formeln der Tradition ebenso wie der Avantgarde -, doch wie er diese zu etwas völlig Eigenem, unmittelbar Berührendem umformt, fasziniert ungemein. …
Alle beteiligten Interpreten identifizieren sich hundertprozentig mit dieser so individuellen, verletzlichen und doch von großer innerer Stärke geprägten Musik. Auf weitere Veröffentlichungen aus dem Œuvre Thomas Larchers darf man gespannt sein.
Thomas Schulz, Neue Zeitschrift für Musik
In “Böse Zellen”, einem verkappten Klavierkonzert, produziert [Fellner] mit dem Münchener Kammerorchester ebenso gekonnt gläsern splitternde Klänge, Saitengeräusche und Schlagzeugeffekte, wie den vertrauten pianistischen Wohlklang. Kim Kashkashian und das Diotima Quartett sind die anderen vorzüglichen Interpreten in Larchers Werken, in denen sich Intensität, weiträumige Anlage und zeichenhafter Klang zu einem abwechslungsreichen Hörerlebnis verbinden.
Max Nyffeler, Neue Musikzeitung