Lars Jakob Rudjord – “Lullatown”
-This is one of the most peaceful tracks I’ve heard in 2019. The discerning ear can catch the pedals moving in the recording. It’s such an intimate sound that it feels like you are sitting on the piano bench with Rudjord. It’s a wonderful example of the sweet, subtle, enriching beauty of neoclassical piano music.
Anna Sofia Nord – “Meet Again”
-Something about this song reminds me of home. Maybe it’s because my mother, sister, and several aunts play the piano. Maybe it’s because something about it feels like church music. I don’t know, exactly, but it makes me feel good. I wonder about who it was written for… who does she want to meet again? Is it the context of a passed on loved one, perhaps? Or maybe it’s a former love interest who she lost touch with? No matter the inspiration, this is a beautiful composition that touches my soul.
Johann Eckman – Sleepy Songs – “0915”
-We’ve covered Eckman’s work here in the past and it’s easy to hear why we’ve chosen him again. The expressive lines here are sure to wake up even the most passive listener. The human ear (especially in western cultures) are trained for a specific kind of progression and every time Eckman challenges us out of that, we are brought to attention again. This track soothes and it unsettles. It captivates in the best of ways. All it takes is a piano and a soul to evoke something. Eckman does that extremely well.
SOLYS – “Aurora”
-This is one of the most cinematic neoclassical songs we’ve heard that got our attention. Rather than merely lulling you to sleep, there’s something inherently inspirational in the composition. It makes me want to mobilize, to move, to organize, and to make a difference. I think there’s a spirit captured in the phrasing that feels much more like positive momentum than regressive longing. It’s lush and beautiful, sure, but the core of movement is what caught my ear. I adore it.
Joseph Nimoh – “Distant Land”
-There’s a jazz element to Nimoh’s writing that we seldom hear in this subgenre. It’s gorgeous, though. This isn’t the smoke-filled lounge style jazz; this is exquisite, thought provoking jazz. I think of fine liquor and classy clothes when I listen to this. Join me in my study, patches on our jackets, as we drink sherry and contemplate the state of the world.