Silent, Listening

Silent, Listening

by Fred Hersch
Silent, Listening

Silent, Listening

by Fred Hersch

Vinyl LP(Long Playing Record)

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Pianist Fred Hersch spotlights his poetic, harmonically nuanced solo piano work on 2024's Silent, Listening. The album is Hersch's second for the storied ECM label, following his 2022 duet collaboration with trumpeter Enrico Rava, The Song Is You. Produced by Manfred Eicher in Lugano, Switzerland's Auditorio Stelio Molo RSI, the same concert hall where they recorded with Rava, Silent, Listening features a mix of delicately rendered standards alongside a handful of the pianist's originals. While Hersch is more closely associated with his straight-ahead interpretations of classic American Songbook standards, here he displays just how painterly and surprisingly avant-garde his tastes lean. There's a sense on Silent, Listening that Hersch is composing in the moment, balancing the artful melodicism he is known for with sustained moments of freely improvised flights of fancy. Several of this own compositions have titles inspired by the work of painter Robert Rauschenberg, including "Volon" and "Aeon." Those, along with evocatively titled songs like "Night Tide Light," have a modern classical feeling, marked by long, languid phrases and shadowy dissonance. There's also "Little Song," a lilting, dancerly piece he originally wrote for Rava and which he presents here for the first time. All of these conjure an evocative vibe, like Ahmad Jamal in deep, improvisational reflection with Claude Debussy, and one he carries through to the standards. Here, he sinks into a lovelorn rendition of Billy Strayhorn's "Star-Crossed Lovers" and illuminates the moon-dappled classical influences at the core of Russ Freeman's "The Wind" and Alec Wilder's "Winter of My Discontent." ~ Matt Collar

Product Details

Release Date: 05/24/2024
Label: Ecm Records
UPC: 0602458909647
Rank: 7215

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