“Meaghan Burke was the outstanding soloist, convincing both in long stretches of spoken monologue and in Brechtian sung ballads, which seemed tailored to her street-smart, feline voice.”
“Cello-rock songwriter Meaghan Burke’s new album Creature Comforts…spans from stark art-rock, noir cabaret, and phantasmagorical theatre music to frequent departures into the avant garde. She has a cynical sense of humor and an often menacingly dramatic presence…Lots of flavors, good jokes and storytelling on this strangely enticing album.”
“Forever House makes wildly complicated songs whose improvisatory flights and furies are held together, barely, by Meaghan Burke’s keening, swooping melodies. A lurid aura hangs over these difficult, jarring compositions, witchy incantations invoking freaks, body doubles and spiders. Burke’s voice is velvety dark, draping over odd-shaped rhythms, jutting stabs of violent sound.”
“Four skillful composer-performers—Leah Asher and Marina Kifferstein on violins and Meaghan Burke on cello, with Wendy Richman newly added on viola—make up this trailblazing quartet.”
-Steve Smith on The Rhythm Method, The New Yorker
“The performers — Binkowski, Burke, Lin, and violinist Karen Kim — played with slashing aplomb.” – Steve Smith, The Boston Globe
“there are hi-jinks in her business, an embroidered, fresh-faced charm; the manner in which she beams, sporting the ivory being a facial equivalent of Doris Day greeting the day’s business with a windmill slap of a thigh…Yet she marries this innocence with regular dips into Diamanda Galas style melodrama, the voice flitting and swooping like a swallow, elasticising from trills to treacle…the sound is agile and lively, moving across smoky blues, nimble jazz and scattergun torch song and back with barely a blink.”
“There is something terribly wrong with calling Meaghan Burke a songwriter. Like vodka, the more you question the effects, the blurrier they become. Meaghan Burke is not an artist whose musically over-educated past is a primer for making marketable pop music. Her sound embraces the odd nuances contained in love affairs with free improvisation, lingering music school sadism, a career geographically split between New York and the Vienna intelligentsia. Meaghan sings jazzy, approachable melodies over cello accompaniments that channel every possible incarnation of Western music all at once. It’s impossibly beautiful but in no way forgiving. Her fingers race in preparation of cadenzas and the orchestration seems totally unrelated to what pours out of her mouth. And then even in moments where one might be so inclined to say, finally: “Yes, OK! She is a songwriter! This part has been pretty for almost a minute…” But then, when you listen closely to what she’s actually singing about, with this voice of hers like an oven, crackling with past lives on newspaper, burning, and, well, it’s not ok. Because what she’s created is too personal, too direct and unusual to claim she’s a songwriter – which sounds categorically absurd but it’s true – it’s like she’s a songwriter, imploded. She’ll sing about anything; bed bugs, the Gowanus, even boyfriends – but look, seriously, it just doesn’t sound right. She squeals and bleeps intermittently like suddenly we’re in a car. Her timing is too dark and immense and she can’t play at this coffeehouse… And then she’ll do this thing where she starts to sing in German.”
“Back to Meaghan: It doesn’t happen often that I lapse into devotional awe in the very first song: vocals and cello – and the masterpiece is complete. The decisive point here is not just the intensity of text and music, but most of all the plasticity of presentation: songs which don’t hide behind an image, but stand, first and foremost, for themselves. The approach is pretty old-school – and that’s a good thing. ‘And did you know, and did you know, how much I thought I loved you?!’ – you don’t often see such a beautiful wink.” -Hubert Weinheimer, The Gap, December 2014 (in translation; full German review at http://www.thegap.at/buchstories/artikel/zur-lage-der-indie-nation/)
“…given a gripping performance” -New York Classical Review, on a performance of Giacinto Scelsi’s Dharana for cello and bass with Ghost Ensemble (full review at http://newyorkclassicalreview.com/2014/05/ghost-ensemble-embodies-the-spirit-of-rugged-independence/)
“A work delivered with alarming tour-de-force intensity by Cadillac Moon cellist Meaghan Burke, who played, narrated, and sang in what is a true concert opera. Her readings were insinuating and darkly dramatic, with a noir theatricality very much a distillation of the composer’s ideals and fascinations, of uncovering the rot beneath the shiny and plastic, only to discover there’s something not quite right about the truth that set us free, either.” -The Examiner, on Alex Temple’s Switch: A Science Fiction Micro-Opera for Cadillac Moon Ensemble, December 2013 (Full review at: http://www.examiner.com/article/the-cell-plays-host-to-a-den-of-death)
“Als das Subterrarium zu Beginn diesen Sommers seine Kellerpforte geschlossen hat, haben viele zum ersten Mal davon gehört – wenn überhaupt. Sieben Jahre lang wurde dort jeden Freitag Abend an der Zukunft geschraubt. Musiker und Musikerinnen von überallher machten hier Zwischenstopp, um in Sachen Musik neue Wege aufzuzeigen. Eine von ihnen war Meaghan Burke.
And we all fall in love …
Meaghan Burke ist New Yorkerin, hat aber in Wien ihr Cello-Studium abgeschlossen. Zwischen 2009 und 2013 hat sie hier sehr viele Konzerte gegeben. Solo, im Duo Cheating On New York, im Trio mit Bernd Klug und David Schweighart als Le Cowboy sowie als Teil des Kollektivs Loose Lips Sink Ships….
Zurück zu Meaghan: Es passiert nicht oft, dass ich schon während des ersten Lieds in andächtiges Staunen verfalle: Stimme und Cello – fertig ist das Meisterwerk. Entscheidend sind hier nicht nur die Intensität von Text und Musik, sondern vor allem die Plastizität der Darbietung: Lieder, die sich nicht hinter einem Image verstecken, sondern in erster Linie für sich selbst stehen. Ja, genau: Der Ansatz ist ziemlich old school – und das ist auch gut so. ‘And did you know, and did you know, how much I thought I loved you?!’ – selten wird so schön gezwinkert.” – The Gap (http://www.thegap.at/buchstories/artikel/zur-lage-der-indie-nation/)