CD Review by Tony Smith
This 2000 album has the quartet line-up, Lara Goodridge (violin), Tim Hollo (viola), Peter Hollo (cello) and Veren Grigorov (viola).
All contribute vocals.
This electric string quartet continue to explore ‘modern’ music and to interpret and perform pieces not usually associated with this typically baroque musical form.
In a very eclectic mix, FourPlay perform the dramatic ‘Domino’ (The Clouds), ‘Just Like You Said It Would Be’ (Sinead O’Connor), a punkish sounding ‘Ich Bin Ein Auslander’ (Pop Will Eat Itself), the Klezmerish ‘Breakfast in America’ (Supertramp), swing into ‘On the Road Again’ (Willie Nelson) and give voice to ‘Cut Up’ (Ned’s Atomic Dustbin).
Lara Goodridge’s sweet singing carries ‘The Boy from Ipanema’ (Getz/Gilberto) dreamily atop some interesting pizzicato.
Original tracks include ‘Meshugganah’ dub and the unmistakeable Klezmer version by Peter Hollo, the whimsical ‘August’ by Lara Goodridge, the initially relaxed and unhurried ‘Lilli Pilli Drive’ by Lara Goodridge (who contributes something akin to lilting), Tim Hollo, Peter Hollo and former FourPlayer, Chris Emerson, and ‘Gypsy Scream’ by Veren Grigorov which conveys the wild drama and colour of gypsy culture.
The final track ‘Femme Fatale’ (The Velvet Underground) is given the group’s playful treatment.
Lara Goodridge’s singing makes a nice pairing with the ‘Boy from Ipanema’, warning that ‘everybody knows’ the things she does.
This is an enjoyable album that builds and improves on the band’s earlier Catgut ya Tongue?
Apart from the technical brilliance of their string playing, FourPlay have an uncanny ability to hear the potential in pop songs.
The various composers whose works they interpret and re-imagine must be amazed to hear the treatments FourPlay produce in homage.
In many cases FourPlay’s versions could have greater appeal than the somewhat ephemeral originals.