Chantal. Izzy. Tasya. Victoria. These names might well pass up as that of Playboy playmates but, no. They are the ‘string’ girls that comprise Escala, an all-female electronic string quartet that blossomed from the second season of Britain’s Got Talent in 2008.
From the almost controversial name Scala to Escala, then to eScala and finally reverted back to Escala, the quartet released their debut album on May 25, 2009. The album boasts of contemporary music arranged for a string quartet and includes a few classical pieces. Welch composer Karl Jenkin’s Palladio was their trademark performance in BGT and is also included in the album.
Escala is a Bond-reincarnate. If you’ve listened to Bond’s music a few years back, the style is almost the same, not to mention that Escala is also composed of four very leggy and appealing girls. The eleven tracks are all covers of which two, Led Zeppelin’s Kashmir and Barber‘s Adagio For Strings were already performed by Bond in their albums. What differentiates Escala from Bond is that the album Escala brought out the distinctive sound of the string quartet despite the intrusive drums in the accompaniment. For that matter alone, Escala was more successful.
Personally, Craig Armstrong’s haunting Finding Beauty and melancholic Barber’s Adagio For Strings are my favorite tracks in the album though Adagio was a little bit bastardized with the infusion of drums towards the middle of the piece.
For those who never heard of or new to classical crossover music, then you might have indigestion with this album not to mention bored. But I tell you, this is one of those classical crossover albums that might indulge you into what I call real music.
Escala by Escala is produced by Trevor Horn under Sony Music.