Hear The Track HereIt isn't often when I can start a review by saying 'hey this is different' but - believe me - THIS is different. But let's start at the beginning. 'Wondered if you'd be interested in reviewing my latest album Grains' Jim Perkins wrote, and how could I refuse after such a nice, polite approach? I could not indeed. Jim Perkins is a pianist, and a classicist at that, although that shouldn't be a problem should it? Well, not when it's done right, and Jim Perkins does it with tremendous style and technical know how. I am a sucker for good piano pieces and here is a whole album just full of them, and all as good as each other. How could this not be a good thing?
Unless you are a headbanger, yeah maybe.
Chopin Prelude (track one) will show you immediately that although this may be classed (no pun intended) as classical, it's not dead white dude music as we know it. Jim mixes in some tasty electronic tricks on this, and unleashes more as the album progresses and is especially clever at resonating sound which I just love. The segue from Number 3 to The Feed is memorable as are the two tracks in question with Number 3 getting the major share of attention. No matter which way you approach this material you will get a different feeling every time, and that - for me - is the main event. Shows that not only does the music have legs, it's got a brain too.
Aaah, back to the old highbrow thing are we? Well no **** off!!. To my shame I have only heard the barest scattering of modern composers, and usually in passing at that, so it was good to wrap my ears around such an album as this, overflowing with ideas as it is. It's also an album I really recommend listening to in its entirety because that's the way it works best, and considering it only 38 or so minutes long, it's just right for a tea break or - better yet - a musical nightcap. I don't profess to understand classical music at all, but like most plebs I know what I like and what interests me about this genre and Grains (the whole LP) is exactly what I need when I need a break from the musical hurly burly.
Highly Recommended modern classical experience.