forthcoming releases
home Cold Blue releases three to six recordings each year.

Currently in production are the following new releases . . .

new releases
backlist vinyl
Thomas Newman and Rick Cox

35 Whirlpools Below Sound

A wide-ranging, haunting electro-acoustic soundscape by composer-performers Newman and Cox, 35 Whirlpools ... was developed and realized during the 25-plus years that the two have worked as musical collaborators.

Newman is a well-known and highly regarded film-music composer who has also written non-film-related works for such ensembles as the Kronos Quartet and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. (Newman has performed Cox's music on two previous Cold Blue CDs.) Cox, who has collaborated and recorded with Jon Hassell, Thomas Newman, Ry Cooder, Peter Freeman, Chas Smith, and many others, has had a his music released on seven previous Cold Blue CDs (More info ...).

"{Cox's] enveloping harmonies are less innocent than they first appear. Prettiness with a tough core." —The Wire

"Rick is a hidden master of the crepuscular and the diaphanous." —Ry Cooder

"Newman's writing is comfortable in many worlds and fun to listen to."—Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times

"[Newman is] a versatile talent ... fond of experimentation ... The result is distinctive, often haunting music that can be lush and melodic or stark and edgy." —Los Angeles Times

about the label
October 2014
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Michael Jon Fink

from a folio

A set of seven new pieces for cello and piano, performed by composer Fink and cellist Derek Stein. Fink’s music has been described by The Los Angeles Times as "lustrous" and "metaphysically tinged." The L.A. Weekly has written that Fink’s music is "of ethereal simplicity ... refined ... spare ... distinctly his own." His music has appeared on seven previous Cold Blue CDs. Derek Stein is a member of the Los Angeles new music groups wild Up and gnarwhallaby. (More info ...)

CD single (18 mins.).

"The composer ... is confirmed as a master of sensitivity and good taste. In his personal interpretation of historical minimalism, there is a warmth, a presence and a deep involvement, which is extremely rare." —Sands-Zine (Italy)

"Michael Jon Fink—operating within New Music but sidestepping much of its systematic, lab-dulled pretention ... There's something of Gavin Bryars' evanescent emotional skill to Fink's music, something of the soft spatial blur of the Evanses (Bill and Gil) ... what gets me every time is its sheer and honest beauty." —Misfit City (UK)

October 2014
John Luther Adams

The Wind in High Places

Beautiful, vaporous string music, featuring the highly regarded and well known JACK Quartet performing the four-movement title piece and Dream of the Canyon Wren (Adams's first two works written solely for string quartet) and the Northwestern Cello Ensemble, directed by Hans Jensen, performing the four-movement cello choir work Canticles of the Sky.

Cold Blue has released four previous CDs devoted to 2014 Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams's music, and individual works of his have appeared on two of the label's anthology releases.

"Adams's major works have the appearance of being beyond style; they transcend the squabbles of contemporary classical music." —Alex Ross, The New Yorker

"The music of John Luther Adams is simply beautiful. It has a crystalline quality and a peaceful character that evoke the Arctic life. . . . Adams’ music sounds like it has nothing to accomplish. It simply exists, hanging in mid-air, waiting to be listened to." —All-Music Guide

"John Luther Adams is a great underappreciated composer who has written music of enormous beauty and sophistication while staying true to his roots as an outsider." —Sequenza21

January 2015
Daniel Lentz

In the Sea of Ionia

Wild new solo piano and multi-piano music performed by Grammy-nominated new-music pianist Aron Kallay.

"When it comes to attempts at musical seduction, Daniel Lentz's music is way out in front." —Kyle Gann, The Village Voice

"By intriguing his listeners at the same time he wreathes them in smiles, Lentz always comes up with something listenable and worthwhile." —Gramophone

"Lentz's music inhabits what he terms a musical 'state of becoming,' where both new and reappearing musical and textual fragments are fused through complex layering processes. However, the real basis of his seductive music may be the dreamy impressionism of Debussy and the lyrical voice and keyboard interaction of Schubert's lieder." — John Schaefer, WNYC, New Sounds

"Lentz's work 'chortles' in ways both sensual and intellectual." —Los Angeles Reader

"Daniel Lentz’s work, with its … glossy, Pop Art-Southern California palette of colors … seems to reveal new facets with each encounter." —Dusted magazine

January 2015
Chas Smith

new work

New compositions for his newly constructed instrument The Towers, a series of large pipes and plates, and the processed voice of noted visual artist Paul McCarthy.

"The core of [Cold Blue’s] production resides in Chas Smith’s works. … this composer, guitarist and authentic desert enthusiast has developed his own soundworld using unique instruments he designs and builds himself. The heir of Harry Partch and several other instrument inventors, he has given birth to highly beautiful and formal microtonal music. It is rich in complex harmonics and often structured around alternating rising and falling movements. " — Gérard Nicollet, Octopus (France)

Daniel Lentz

Café Desire

An opera

"When it comes to attempts at musical seduction, Lentz's music is way out front." —Kyle Gann, Village Voice

"By intriguing his listeners at the same time he wreathes them in smiles, Lentz always comes up with something listenable and worthwhile. That’s certainly true of this new release." — Arved Ashby, Gramophone

"Daniel Lentz’s work, with its sparkle and pulse, has long evinced hallmarks of the minimalist style. But Lentz has often brought a glossy, Pop Art-Southern California palette of colors to his work." — Dusted

Jim Fox

blue photographs — selected piano music

Blue photographs collects a few dozen of the many aphoristic piano pieces Fox has written during the past 25 years.

"One of the striking qualities of Jim Fox's compositions is that you can still hear them inside you long after the music is over." —Wadada Leo Smith

"This is music that sounds like it was made in that California of cool northern beaches or the Mojave Desert as seen in the stark intimacy of Joshua Tree or even the remembered despair of the landscape around Donner Pass. This is a music of honesty, seductive and delicate yet strong and dark." —Daniel Lentz