Monday, September 22, 2014

Nils Frahm - Screws (Erased Tapes, 2012)

I'm welcoming autumn with this wonderfully melancholy piano album from a very gifted composer. In fact, I've listened to it a dozen times today.

 Just before it was released, Nils Frahm had broken his thumb. In the despair and fear that naturally came from such an incident, he set off to record a piece each night, before bed. Over the course of nine nights, with nine fingers, and a single microphone, he overcame the seemingly monumental setback, resulting in an improvisational opus of extraordinary beauty. These sparse and intimate portraits, spanning a mere twenty-eight minutes, are powerful, combining the spirit of Satie with some of the best new age piano recordings in the modern compositional canon.

Though he initially released the recording as a free download, not thinking it was worth much at all, he couldn't have been more wrong. I'm deeply moved by this half hour of troubled and beautiful sketches. I hope you will be too.

Below, I've also included some of his other work, so as to showcase his versatility. Be sure to watch the last video, "All Melody" to appreciate his electronic sensibility as well. Enjoy.

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