Since our late great radio icon John Aielli passed away, KUTX’s airwaves have largely veered away from classical music. But some of the best things about classical music are its timeless universality, its enduring ability to be adapted, and its ripe potential for renewed relevance post-re-interpolation. That’s also is a big part of what drives Austin multi-instrumentalist/instructor Evergreen, whose traditional cello upbringing and intrinsic understanding of the classical “language” had earned her spots onstage alongside Father John Misty and The Eagles by her mid-twenties.
As with the third stream movement of the 1950s, Evergreen especially seems to enjoy taking a revisionist approach to classic compositions, ditching strict tempo instructions in favor of moment-to-moment nuance, and letting centuries-old leitmotifs bask in new contexts. For her upcoming debut, Delicious Vignettes of Recent American Kind, Evergreen dissembles Antonin Dvořák’s “American String Quartet No. 12” and splits its bits across five infectious neo-classical sketches. That, on top of an ample cast of collaborators, an indie folk original, and a Joni Mitchell cover closing out the album, Delicious Vignettes is pretty much the exact level of classical-inspired eclecticism that Aielli so adored.
Today, before Delicious Vignettes drops on Friday, we took a “Step” closer to the LP with a stripped-down duet between nylon guitarist Chris Melas and percussionist Charles Godfrey. A delightful dance of flamenco rhythms and Latin jazz, “Step” feels like a great way to start Spring.