The Kronos Quartet, a very open-minded classical string quartet, caused a lot of eyebrows to be raised with this unusual set. They perform eight Thelonious Monk compositions and two Duke Ellington pieces that Monk had recorded. All of the notes played by the strings were written out in advance by arranger Tom Darter but the improvising bassist Ron Carter is a major asset on five of the selections which are placed in a "Monk Suite." In addition, the two Ellington numbers have The Kronos Quartet joined by bassist Chuck Israels and drummer Eddie Marshall. Fortunately the string arrangements are very much in Monk's style, with many of the lines taken directly off of the pianist's recordings. This unique set is worth checking out.
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow
feat: Ron Carter