Q Magazine

Playlist - Olafur Arnalds' "Modernists - the best new classical composers"

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Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds has been straddling several genres for the last few years. Not only does he have his classic work, but he’s created soundtracks for the likes of The Hunger Games and Looper, released two EPs that he created within a week, and joined in a host of collaborations. With him return to his compositions for new album For Now I Am Winter which came out this week (4 March), Arnalds has offered to shine a light on the modern classic scene for us in a special Playlist. A new modern classical scene has been brewing in the last few years,” he explains of his selections. “This is a combination of people, most of whom are my friends, that I look up to both musically and personally. It’s a wonderful collection of people who do kind of crossover-classical music that influence me and affect how I compose my own works.”

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Nils Frahm – Me

“From my dear friend Nils’ new album, Screws. Wonderful piano sound, very intimate and warm. Nils is definitely one of the best piano-based artists out there.”

Dustin O’Halloran – Fragile N4

“Another one in my close circle. I have been following Dustin for years but only got to know him personally recently. This is one of his best pieces.”

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A Winged Victory for the Sullen – Steep Hills of Vicodin Tears

“These guys are on Erased Tapes Records and are a collaboration between Dustin O’Halloran and Adam Wiltzie (Stars Of The Lid). Dustin plays piano while Adam rocks out on the guitar and they are accompanied by a string quartet.”

Max Richter Recomposed – Spring 2 (Vivaldi – Four Seasons)

“Max remixed Vivaldi’s Four Seasons to great success. I actually much prefer this to the original piece. He brought the modern soul into it.”

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David Darling – ShoeStrings

“Just one cellist with his multitrack recording device. Lots and lots of layers of cellos. Just how we like it! Anything David does, I’m a fan of.”

Clint Mansell – Together We Will Live Forever

“One of Clint’s best soundtracks is The Fountain. This is the end credits track from that wonderful film. Shows just how delicate Clint can be when he really wants to.”

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Ryuichi Sakamoto – Bibo No Azora

“My favorite piece of this Japanese composer and one of the first pieces I heard from him.”

Peter Broderick – I Am Piano

“Peter always has this intriguing, almost childish, person about him. Simple melodies but intricate arrangements.”

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Jóhann Jóhannsson – The Rocket Builder

“He is one of my early influences when it came to mixing traditional instruments with electronic sounds. Jóhann does it subtly and well.”

Daníel Bjarnason – Bow To String

“The Icelandic composer received the Icelandic Music award for this piece. Amazingly varied arrangements on the same melody here.”

For more head to Olafurarnalds.com.


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