The Section Quartet

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The Section Quartet is one of my favorite groups. Of which there is a very tiny number, since my taste in music is either old and conservative (as in pre-20th-century) or new and odd. It shouldn’t be possible for someone who admires Handel to also really like “Girlfriend”, but there you have it.

Fittingly, the Section Quartet covers a range of very different works.

My favorites out of this particular album would be:

Juicebox
A cover of the Strokes’ hit single in 2005. This improves on the original, while preserving the original’s rhythm and beat extremely well. There’s actually no percussion in this piece (or at least, no explicit percussion by actual percussionists with percussive instruments. Unless it’s string instruments).
Such Great Heights
A cover of the Post Service’s 2003 hit. This is lyrical and beautiful. You know, whenever I hear people singing, I tend to want to replace them with violins or possibly violas.
Time is Running Out
From Muse, 2003. Much, much, much better when replaced by string instruments with a modern approach towards play.
Heartbreaker
Yes, it is indeed 1969 Led Zeppelin. The “guitar” solo, which you don’t get to hear in the Amazon mp3 clip, is very effectively replaced by violin assisted by fuzzbox.

The iTunes version of the album is DRM’d but does have a cover of Massive Attack’s 1998 “Teardrop”, which is difficult to carry off with classical instruments. That cover considerably softens Teardrop into a wistfulness that was intended by the lyrics but doesn’t carry off otherwise in the original. You can, of course, just buy the Teardrop track.

The Section Quartet is neither Handel nor Avril Lavigne, but they could probably do a pretty good cover of “Girlfriend”. I often think of them while I listen to that song, which is probably why I like it as much as I do.

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