Nuevo

The innovative Kronos Quartet turns its sights to the music of Mexico for Nuevo, a collection of native songs spanning the past 80 years.

The innovative Kronos Quartet turns its sights to the music of Mexico for Nuevo, a collection of native songs spanning the past 80 years. The album, which came to fruition after violinist David Harrington visited Mexico City, interprets songs from an eclectic mix of Mexican composers, including Juan Garcia Esquivel, Roberto Gómez Bolaños, and Silvestre Revueltas. In addition to the quartet's string arrangements, field recordings of religious rituals and street celebrations give the album a lively reality. The quartet is equally adept at solemn love songs (Agustín Lara's "Se Me Hizo Facil") and whimsical farces (Bolaños' "Chavo Suite"). From the melancholy melodies of one-armed street performer Carlos Garcia's musical leaf to Plankton Man's deft mix of traditional mariachi and European electronica, Nuevo is a vibrant showpiece of Mexico's musical diversity.—JDF