yMusic - Balance Problems

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Release Date: September 30, 2014

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Proclaimed by I Care If You Listen as a "recorded work of art which exists in a class of its own,Balance Problems is the sophomore album from acclaimed chamber ensemble yMusic, released September 30, 2014. The record features compositions by Timo Andres, Marcos Balter, Mark Dancigers, Nico Muhly, Andrew Norman, Sufjan Stevens, and Jeremy Turner, and was produced by Son Lux. To give audiences a glimpse of what to expect from Balance Problems, yMusic has released an album trailer. The brief clip depicts the sextet very intently performing a selection from the record, and its attention to small details magnifies the delicate finesse utilized by the performers.


Balance Problems is the sophomore release from yMusic -- a group of six New York City instrumentalists (Rob Moose, CJ Camerieri, Clarice Jensen, Alex Sopp, Hideaki Aomori, and Nadia Sirota) flourishing in the overlap between the pop and classical worlds. The much-anticipated follow-up to 2011's Beautiful Mechanical (Time Out New York's #1 Classical Record of the Year) features stunning new compositions from Nico Muhly, Sufjan Stevens, Andrew Norman, Mark Dancigers, Jeremy Turner, Marcos Balter, and Timo Andres, all realized through the ensemble's striking performances.

Since their inception in 2008, yMusic has sought to bring a classical chamber music aesthetic to venues outside the traditional concert hall. Their unique configuration (string trio, flute, clarinet, and trumpet) has attracted the attention of high profile collaborators-from Dirty Projectors to My Brightest Diamond-and more recently inspired an expanding repertoire of original works by some of today's foremost composers. With this new release, world-class composition and peerless performances share the center-stage, as the group continues to develop their own intense, nuanced style around a host of new works.

Balance Problems operates in a different realm than traditional chamber music. The album's intricate sonic landscape is heavily impacted by genre-defying luminary Son Lux, who, after composing the title track to the group's debut, was brought on as producer and mixing engineer for Balance Problems. With his diverse background in electronic and experimental music, Lott helped push the project to new heights: the limits of the ensemble's six acoustic instruments are expanded to create a sonic tapestry of enormous depth and subtlety, all while maintaining the integrity of the musicians' original performances. What results is a sweeping, full-bodied listen that will entice fans of indie rock, baroque pop, and classical music alike.

yMusic's members have toured and recorded with top artists across genre lines such as Bon Iver, Paul Simon, Bjork, The National, Meredith Monk, Antony & the Johnsons, David Byrne, The New York Philharmonic, and Sufjan Stevens.

Press and News:

Rhapsody: Classical Diversity - Today's Voices in Composition

Flavorwire: Video Premiere - yMusic’s “Music in Circles” Video Mixes Glitch-Art with Modern Dance

Audiophile Audition: "quite attractive...idiomatic of a new style in American music"

Rhapsody: Top 25 Classical Albums of 2014 - #20

NPR Music: Favorite Songs of 2014 (Classical) - Jeremy Turner's "The Bear and The Squirrel"

I Care If You Listen: 2014 New Music Holiday Gift Guide

Ted Gioia: 100 Best Albums of 2014 - Honorable Mention

Second Inversion: Album of the Week - "a series of carefully crafted sonic landscapes which blend imaginative musical textures of enormous depth and detail."

New Noise Magazine: "yMusic do a great job of pulling baroque, chamber and classical ideas into indie-rock, thereby securing a very unique place for them to reside."

PopMatters: "Bladed Stance" Video Premiere - "The wispy wind instruments of yMusic's 'Bladed Stance' are complemented perfectly by the Terrence Malick-esque visuals of the song's video."

Pitchfork: "Through the deft production of Son Lux's Ryan Lott, the seam between pop and classical is sewed tight, as he, the yMusic sextet, and seven composers take the tenets of modern classical music and breathe new life into it."

I Care If You Listen: "lush sonic landscape....[a] recorded work of art which exists in a class of its own"

PopMatters: 8/10 - "The album’s eight pieces all succeed in similar measures, give or take a degree. Each collaborator’s signature is visible on their respective tracks, but their presence never feels outsized in its place among the rest of the record."

In Your Speakers: "flows fluidly from one track to the next..."

Tri State Indie: "yMusic captures their listeners and nearly creates sight from sound"

Detroit Metro Times: "not just an experiment in blurring boundaries between genres, but also pushes the concept of performance to be able to accommodate the innovative sound."

Utne Reader: Music Sampler - title track Balance Problems by Nico Muhly - "beautifully intricate"

Wondering Sound: 4/5 stars

Textura: "a superb album" - insight behind the album with yMusic members and album producer Son Lux

Pitchfork Advance: yMusic Balance Problems

Pitchfork: Track Preview, "Music in Circles" - "a five-minute static-electricity storm"

The Big City: "their strongest release yet"

SoundChips: "Music in Circles" - "chilling, moving, powerful, emotive, stunning"

Classicalite: "[Balance Problems] promises to, yet again, straddle that finest of lines between classical chamber music and the classic pop hook"

The Daily Cardinal: "a skillful blend of modern feel with classical foundation... one worth listening to."