This release brings together works written between 2008 and 2015 by London-based Canadian Cassandra Miller. The Bozzini Quartet, who gave most of the premieres, is perhaps best placed to open the door to this delicate world. Four works reveal the manner of the composer, who, like the writer drawing inspiration from newspaper clippings, is on the lookout for the ambient musical material as the basis of her composition. Thus, Warblework starts with bird songs to offer us a world of changing textures with a treatment of silence and just intervals of remarkable efficiency. About Bach, which won the Jules Léger Prize in 2016, takes the motifs of a chaconne through a linear evolution imprinted with nostalgia, with the superimposition of a slow complaint to the violin in the high register against stable and durable sounds in the bass.
If the composer affixes her mark thanks to her borrowings, she offers us an airy, meditative and sensitive universe. She arrives, in a few notes, to capture all our attention and plunge us into her perception of time. The Bozzini Quartet marries this music with a confusing naturalness. The subtle nuances and cohesiveness of the group are essential elements in faithfully translating Miller’s voice. If the absence of booklet is unfortunate in terms of transmission and mediation, Just So remains a very successful invitation to rethink time and listening to music.
Cassandra Miller, Just So / Bozzini Quartet / Another Timbre at129, 2018.