Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bass clarinet quartets Edmund Welles and Acid Bass

What is it about bass clarinet quartets that seem to invite transcriptions of rock songs? Edmund Welles, a bass clarinet quartet from Oakland, CA, pulls off an incredible performance of Radiohead's "Creep" in this video.

According to EdmundWelles.com, the quartet "was originally founded on two principles: the bass clarinet can achieve a virtually unlimited range of sounds, and when this same instrumental voice is multiplied, it can be as powerful as a boogie woogie piano, a gospel quartet or a rock band." In addition to transcriptions, the group also performs original compositions by member Cornelius Boots.

Check out the MySpace page for Acid Bass, another bass clarinet quartet that harnesses the power of the bass clarinet to depict the music of rock bands. There, you can listen to their versions of Black Sabbath's "Iron Man" and Spinal Tap's "Big Bottom," along with more traditional repertoire.

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