Tosca String Quartet Reviews
In their first years together, the orchestra had as many as four to five regular weekly gigs at clubs in Austin and Houston, the Elephant Room and the Continental Club among them. That a band of classically trained string players were plying their trade in clubs and not just concert halls made Tosca unique...
"Tosca Tango Orchestra reunites to play sultry, complex music once again", article, Austin American-Statesman - 2012
...soon a much wider crowd began to catch the tango music fever. The minor-chord melodies, the edgy rhythms, the complex, melodramatic mood — tango struck a chord in Austin.
- "Ensemble brought tango to the clubs", Austin American-Statesman - 2009
The string players appeared at (SXSW) in 2007, proving that crowds welcome them as strongly in UT’s Bass Concert Hall (their alma mater) as they do at Emo’s.
- "CASA Casts a Tosca Lure", article, San Antonio Current - 2008
"If you work with them, you can't go back," grins Voxtrot frontman Ramesh Srivastava about the four professionals in Tosca String Quartet. After recording a track for the band's Your Biggest Fan EP, Tosca returned to the indie-pop quintet and splayed beautiful depth all over their debut full-length. The emotion evident on Voxtrot wouldn't be possible without them.
- "Tosca: Indie Rock's Orchestra", article, Austin Chronicle - 2007
Through it all, the Tosca strings shimmered and skittered their way about the melodies, lending texture and weight to Wagner's obtusely dark lyrical allusions.
- "Tosca String Quartet & Lambchop SXSW Showcase", review, Austin Chronicle - 2007
In particular, he was masterfully accompanied by the Tosca Strings, which played a major role in stirring all the different flavors into one tasteful stew...
- David Byrne concert review, Live Daily.com - 2005
On the other, Texas-based chamber group the Tosca Strings, featured on nearly every track of “Grown Backwards,” saturated the songs with a burnished, complicated glow. Cellos and violins sawed whirling harmonies on “I, Zimbra,” dropped notes like ornaments onto a cover of Lambchop’s “The Man Who Loved Beer,” and unfurled lush swaths of melody on “Glass, Concrete, and Stone.”
- David Byrne concert review, Boston Globe - 2004
Blending old-world dedication with futuristic genre-bending, Austin’s Tosca String Quartet is in a class by itself.
- Tosca 'Recommended Music' preview, Austin Chronicle - 2004
Byrne’s fascination with strings has kept the Tosca Strings – Mahoney, Asbell, violinist Tracy Seeger and cellist Sara Nelson – busy in recent years. After touring with Byrne following the 2001 release of his “Look Into the Eyeball” CD, they went into a recording studio in Austin to lay down tracks for “Grown Backwards.” Quartet members recently completed a European tour with Byrne and said they’ve become an ever more integral part of the artist’s live shows.
- David Byrne concert review, The Grand Rapids Press, Grand Rapids, MI - 2004
Aside from the formidable Kronos, it is hard to think of another contemporary string ensemble that is as versatile and bold in its choice of repertoire, venues, and collaborators.
- "FOUR STRONG WOMEN WITH STRINGS", review, San Antonio Current - 2003
They have maintained that fiery spirit, making it difficult not to get caught up in Bartok’s wry, folk-driven rhythms, but have since honed in on matters of blend and cohesion and come up with more refined technique.
- Tosca Bartok concert review, Austin American-Statesman - 2001
Austin's crossover Tosca Quartet made the Fifth Quartet all but bleed, with their fiery and streetwise performance. Tosca has found a place for itself in Austin's much vaunted live-music scene by performing with an accordionist in tangos, proving again that playing non-classical forms can breathe life into classical music.
- Bela Bartok International Congress concert review, Music in Concert - 2000
Waking Life’s mood, mystery, and fluidity become doubly effective as a result of the sensuous sounds of Austin-based maestro Glover Gill and his seven-piece "tango nuevo" orchestra, Tosca.
- Waking Life movie review, IFCTV.com - 1999
One can only hope that… Reynolds, Stopschinski, and the Tosca String Quartet do something like this again. Collaborations that reap results of this level are not common enough.
- Tosca w/ Graham Reynolds + Peter Stopschinski concert review, Austin Chronicle - 1999
Tosca is sleek, solid, and spare, classically trained… and fully equipped with the instrumental grace their moody and intricate repertoire demands.
- Tosca Tango concert review, Austin Chronicle - 1998