Saturday, September 4, 2010

Sounds Heard Today (Sep. 4th, 2010)

Here are some of the things I've listened to today at work and at home.

As I wanted to listen to some piano playing, I looked at the at what I have available and decided on listening to an album I got three years ago; an energetic and dynamic live performance by pianist Kenny Jaworsky, called A Piano Saga. The album is an un-edited, one-take live recording from April 14, 2005 of 14 original and mostly short compositions by Kenny. Ranging from the frantically fast to tamer mindset, this release is a fine and enjoyable experience to listen to.
Here's a video of Kenny:

For some reason I felt like listening to some Lou Reed. I have most of his albums, which are of varying qualities and amongst my favourites are Berlin, Coney Island Baby, Songs fro Drella (with John Cale) and New York with others like Transformer, Set The Twilight Reeling and Magic & Loss on the second tier. For some reason I wanted to hear the song Set The Twilight Reeling, which starts simply with an acoustic guitar and in a dry fashion but as the song goes on gets more power and then shifts into a second faster and fully electrified section. While I like his voice, a different vocalist could have lifted this song to higher planes. After that I carried on the jovial Coney Island Baby. This is a fun album, happy in a way, which doesn't seem to fit the rather sad and melancholic image that I always had of Lou Reed. 
Both my wife and I love his music; we saw him perform in Israel a few years ago and he gave a terrific performance that even I who dislikes live shows, enjoyed myself very much.As teenagers in the 90s' we got to know more of his albums together, including our favourite of his, Berlin. My wife also introduced me to the Velvet Underground back then, but that's a story for another time.

Somewhat expectedly, I followed Lou Reed with Neil Young - Harvest Moon; a lovely, relaxing and beautiful album filled with folk/country rock songs with lyrics I like to follow. I always like to hear this album in a calm weekend afternoon, enjoying a relaxed moment.

Then to break away from the pattern I put on Pär Lindh Project - Mundus Incompertus. An ELP influenced symphonic-prog extravaganza by this Swedish trio

Song of the day:
Lou Reed - She's My Best Friend (from the album Coney Island)

Album of the day:
Naima - Buscas?

This is a Spanish band made up of four musicians:
Manolo Valls Tenor sax
Luis Torregrosa Drums
Quique Ruiz Piano
Óscar Cuchillo Double bass

I am definitely not knowledgeable about jazz, though I listen to its various styles and approaches as performed by the bands I listen to. Naima plays a lush and dynaimc form of jazz, often starting mellow and then slowly reaching a climax with a rich sound that is greater than the sum of its parts. They have released two albums, Uno in 2006 and Buscas? in 2010. Both are beautiful, relaxing, thrilling pieces of contemporary jazz.
I also like the fact that they cover popular songs:
Behind The Wheel - Depeche Mode
Ana - Pixies
There Is A Light That Never Goes Out - The Smiths
Here you can watch a few videos of theirs:
Highly recommended!
A demain

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