Vicious World: Plays the Music of Rufus Wainwright | Reviews (David Wayne)

“Finally, where Vicious World Plays The Music of Rufus Wainwright really succeeds is how well it puts across Wainwright’s elegant music to a listening audience that may well know little or nothing about the singer/songwriter. It’s almost certain, however, that many will want to check out Wainwright’s music after hearing this CD.”

JazzTimes (Bill Milkowski)

“This inventive New York based septet interprets material by the singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright with some surprising results. Violinist Eliza Cho and cellist Maria Jeffers create mesmerizing accompaniment alongside Frisell-ian guitarist Sebastian Noelle.” (Molly Sheridan)

“Irwin [and McDonald] have assembled a sort of jazz chamber ensemble consisting of himself (saxophone/clarinet/flute), Matt McDonald (trombone), Sebastian Noelle (guitar), Thomson Kneeland (bass), Danny Fisher (drums), Eliza Cho (violin), and Maria Jeffers, (cello). The resulting performances add a new timbral palette and tight, well-considered improvisations into the mix. As an album, the tracks hang together as a beautiful songbook, contemporary without ever feeling gimmicky. Most importantly, perhaps, these musicians succeed in selling their argument that the source material for new standards is rich and waiting.” (C.J. Bond)

“The gripping insights and revelations that flow from the CD: Vicious WorldPlays the Music of Rufus Wainright; Wainright’s prodigious abilities and genius as a lyrical songwriter, which have led to a comparison with the preeminent America songwriter, Cole Porter, insist that his work and that of Vicious World, be examined carefully, and taken very seriously.” (Andrew J. Sammut)

“Wainwright’s music never lets too much light (or lightness) in, and Vicious World’s probing solos and clever arrangements create a canvas from multiple shades of darkness. Let’s just say the septet is moved to musical tears by the singer/songwriter’s earnest melodies and bittersweet harmonies.”