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Caleb Burhans, “The Things Left Unsaid”

Evensong may be Caleb Burhans’ debut CD as a composer, but he has long passed “one to watch” status. A lynchpin performer and provocateur in New York’s alternative new music scene, he has played with and/or founded several of today's most exciting ensembles, including Newspeak and Alarm Will Sound.


This week’s track, “The Things Left Unsaid,” was written for the Tarab Cello Ensemble, former classmates of Burhans at the Eastman School of Music. Its simple arpeggios and descending scales first recall Arvo Pärt (there's an underlying spirituality to the whole album), but Burhans gives them an urban sensibility—the tempos are drum-machine strict, the chord progressions loop like r...