Sarah Kirkland Snider - Unremembered

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Release Date: September 4, 2015

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New Amsterdam Records is proud to announce the forthcoming release of composer Sarah Kirkland Snider's Unremembered - an hour-long, thirteen-part song cycle for seven voices, chamber orchestra, and electronics, inspired by poems and illustrations by writer and visual artist Nathaniel Bellows (W.W. Norton, HarperCollins). Four years in the making, the studio recording of Unremembered, featuring vocalists Padma Newsome (Clogs), DM Stith, and Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), and the Unremembered Orchestra (members of ACME, Alarm Will Sound, ICE, The Knights, So Percussion), conducted by Edwin Outwater (Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Chicago Symphony) will be released on CD, 2xLP, and limited-edition white vinyl 2xLP.

A meditation on memory, innocence, and the haunted grandeur of the natural world, Unremembered recalls strange and beautiful happenings experienced during a childhood in rural Massachusetts: a houseguest takes sudden leave in the middle of the night; a boy makes a shocking discovery on a riverbank; a girl disappears in woods behind a ranging farm; ghosts appear with messages for the living. Through Bellows's moving words and images and Snider's vivid, fraught, astonishing score, the cycle explores the ways in which beguiling events in early life can resonate in--and prepare us for--the subtler horrors that lie beyond the realm of childhood.

Unremembered is the highly-anticipated follow-up album to Snider's widely-acclaimed 2010 song cycle Penelope, which was named the "year's most affecting creation" by Time Out New York (Top Classical Album of 2010) and praised in countless other publications, including Pitchfork ("No matter what perspective you bring to this album, it bears profound rewards"), the New York Times ("rapturous"), the LA Times ("haunting...piercing melancholy") and NPR, who named Penelope one of "The 5 Best Genre-Defying Albums of 2010." Employing a broader instrumental and temperamental palette than she used for PenelopeUnremembered again demonstrates Snider's mastery of both lyric and narrative line and the arsenal of tools she uses to layer, contrast, weave, and construct her ideas. It is work that explores restraint and tumult, the argument of the heart and the mind, vast atmospheric expansiveness, and the myriad territories of intimacy.

Produced by Lawson White and Sarah Kirkland Snider, Unremembered was mixed by GRAMMY Award-winning mixer Andrew Scheps and mastered by GRAMMY Award-winning mastering engineer Chris Bellman. Sound design was created by Michael Hammond (No Lands), Lawson White, and Sarah Kirkland Snider. Both LP and CD formats include hand-drawn illustrations by Nathaniel Bellows and original artwork by DM Stith.

Press and News:

Q2 Music: Video Premiere - Animated Video for Sarah Kirkland Snider's 'The Barn' With DM Stith and Shara Nova

OPERA NEWS: "strangely beautiful, harmonically probing, impressively layered, restless, inquisitive...Snider clearly has a lot to say that's worth listening to."

Mikiki: Best 10 Chamber Music Albums of 2015 - #5

Der Bänkelsänger: Top Albums of 2015

Agit Reader: Staff Picks of 2015 - #4 - "Listeners will still be unpacking its mysteries well into the foreseeable future."

WNYC New Sounds: John Schaefer's Top 10 for 2015

Q2 Music: 2015 New-Music Countdown - #41

Washington Post: Top 5 Classical Recordings of 2015 - "an ambitious Gothic song cycle with a wide range of techniques instrumental, vocal and electronic"

NewMusicBox: 2015 Staff Picks - arresting...deserves to be listened to in order at least twice"

The Nation: 10 Best Albums of 2015 - #4 - "an austere, moving song cycle about strange goings-on in a Dickinsonian landscape"

Night After Night: 10 Notable Albums of 2015

Seth Colter Walls: 50 Records from 2015 - #36

Textura: Top 20 Albums of 2015 - #6

I Care If You Listen: 2015 New Music Holiday Gift Guide

Washington Post: In ‘Unremembered,’ indie classical meets American Gothic

Rhapsody: Classical Diversity - Today's Voices in Composition

Album Streams: "Whenever an album manages to excite and challenge me at the same time, I could cry. You must meet this 'Unremembered' album."

A Good Day for Airplay: Music Videos Collection #196 - Sarah Kirkland Snider's
"The River"

Indy Week: "Unremembered is all about exploding genres, bringing Van Dyke Parks into conversation with John Adams, My Brightest Diamond into collision with Edgard Varèse, and art song into contact with concept album. A recording is out now on New Amsterdam Records, and it’s great."

Snakes and Cats: "Snider captures the unspoken wonder of several centuries during Unremembered, and Bellows the spoken wonder."

Auftouren: Pick of the Quarter - "a boundless triumpgh"

Album of the Year: "Don't do yourself the futility of ignoring this - It is quite possibly the most important work of not only 2015, but of the last decade."

Radio L: Track of the Day - Sarah Kirkland Snider's "The Witch"

France Musique: Autour de Sarah Kirkland Snider

Interview Magazine: Exclusive Video Premiere - 'The River,' "a haunting, orchestral, and poetic album..."

Second Inversion: ""Each song is its own vividly colored vignette, a mesmerizing narrative brought to life through Snider’s rich textural and temperamental palette...unforgettable"

New York Magazine: "Silver threads of medievalish counterpoint twist together with twinkling electronics, faux folk tunes, vintage pop melodies, and avant-garde choral techniques to create an intricately magical landscape."

Thought Catalog: "Together, Snider and Bellows have created one of the most significant and harrowing releases of the year, a ravishing fever dream. Hear it once, and Unremembered is unforgettable."

NewMusicBox: Sarah Kirkland Snider - The Full 360

Q2 Music: Album of the Week - "Unremembered aches with the strange nostalgia of rediscovery...a work of art in its own right."

PopMatters: Album Stream - "...just as enthralling in its musical flow as its lyrical narrative, and the way Snider guides, teases, and manipulates the listener is masterful. It’s a stunning, immensely rewarding experience"

textura: "As fully realized a work as Penelope, this hour-long follow-up reaffirms Snider's stature as a modern composer of significant note and accomplishment."

The Agit Reader: "Sarah Kirkland Snider cements her the finest composer for voice of her generation."

NPR: "The Witch" Track Premiere - Song Of A Haunted Childhood

Genre, I'm Only Dancing: A Boy's Own Gothic - Sarah Kirkland Snider's Unremembered