on life, music etc beyond mainstream

When you think of the cultural baggage of the grand piano and other neo-classical, neo-ambient efforts, new conceptions are hard to find, new styles hard to imagine. On the side of unforgiving boredom of Botox Bullshit Cosmetics for the Society of Great Taste Inc., Max Richter explores sleep on „Sleep“, with a music that reminds you of wanting to sleep right now! He’s the guy who reimagined Vivaldi’s Four Seasons without the tiniest amount of imagination. Crap for the Night of the Proms. „Schöngeisterei“ is the true enemy of adventure’s rotten playground! Playing nice can really turn into exhaustion. There is only one Harold Budd. The world is full of virtuosi who only do well what they are trained to do well. Nevertheless there are still new and fascinating piano solo albums. The first one is by Ketil Bjornstad, it’s even a double solo album („Shimmering/Images“), and I don’t exactly know why I do like it quite a lot. On the surface, it’s too „romantic“, but, matter of fact, though it doesn’t transport me to the edge of the seat, it sends me deep into my sofa with all the antennas out. There is something dark in the beauty, hidden, not quoted. Then there is, recorded with about 24 microphones, a piano solo album by Greek composer Stavros Gasparatos („Extended Piano“): if you don’t follow the blinking red code exit signs by light speed, you’ll be swallowed by the sheer energy of the performance – wild world of ivory (and this is a gentle warning!). I don’t fully understand the magic of this music either, it comes along with big gestures, heavy studio wizardry, FULL LIGHT SHOW (metaphorically speaking), and an attitude of intensity that rivals the extrem mood changes of Tschaikowsky’s piano concertos. Well, well, well. And then there is „Warp“ by Jon Balke (see photo, from a concert in Sardinia), and that is a fantastic album. I immediately fell in love with the music of it, with all its spheres, ghosts, voices, noises, melodies, harmonies, grooves, brakes, shuffling, remnants, and instruction-free getting-lost-phenomena. Something’s happening here, what it is ain’t exactly clear. I collected my questions like flowers on a lawn. We did the interview. One of these days. Gregor looking for one of his favourite Paul Bley albums, „Alone Again“ (unavailable, buried treasure), Rosato holding in his hands the extended version of Erroll Garner’s „Concert by the Sea“. And Clint Eastwood is playing „Misty“, too.



This entry was posted on Dienstag, 2. Februar 2016 and is filed under "Blog". You can follow any responses to this entry with RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


  1. Rosato:

    Paul Bley’s „Alone Again“ – a buried treasure?

    Oh no! It’s alive, standing side by side with „Turning Point“ in my vinyl collection.

    Both records published by Improvising Artists Inc. – a label founded by Paul Bley (as far as I know)

  2. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Ah, TURNING POINT, magic sax player, Mr. Gilmore, on board.

    And VIRTUOSI, real, inventive virtuosi!

    But you can’t buy it anymore, Rarities!

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