Waiting for a Masako
release is like waiting for Christmas day to arrive, you know the present is
going to be good, but you can’t wait to open it anyway, as you know that inside
will lay some of the most pristine and soothing music of the piano genre there
is, so we have to wait no longer as her latest offering is upon us and entitled
Wanderlust can be described as a desire to
travel, when one gets itchy feet and wants to move on. I can imagine that there
is a lot of that right now, but we can now let the gentle and calming
performances by the artist take us there vicariously perhaps. We start with a
short form opener called Lily of the
Valley, this solo starting point is the perfect door opening composition to
an open book of musical beauty.
As one who is lucky enough to live near the sea, I can
completely relate to this track, one that is named Ocean and You. This is truly a superb performance, the depth of
presentation here is as immense as the vast ocean itself, the strings and multi-instrumental
flavours just create an even richer palette for us all to enjoy.
I simply adore natural sounds being used to enhance a musical
creation, I do it myself, it can create a wonderfully redolent arrangement, and Masako has done this here by composing
the track Wintering Birds. The mournful string section and the ethereal
vocalisations all go to manifest a simply beautifully reflective opus indeed.
The memory palace of this next piece called Forestology is a sublime arrangement,
one that inspires many moments of wonderful times in woodlands for me
personally; these happy thoughts are further enriched by this very composition,
it is also one that is a perfect example for any students wishing to understand
further, build progression within a composition. The smoothness of presentation
by Masako here is something truly
special and very serene.
We touch the half way marking point now and as we do so we
come across the title track itself, of course I am refereeing to Wanderlust. This performance by the
artist has some splendid moments of a reflective nature, also an increase in
power and intensity, when perhaps one feels like moving on again, this is
exactly what the title header should be all about, a perfect overall
description of the whole project.
We can now make our way down the hill of the release perhaps
to Lake Willoughby. The brass
segment here was sublime at manifesting a reflective mood, and the natural
beauty of this area is brilliantly portrayed by the passionate and heart felt
narrative of Masako’s piano. There
is a slight change in intensity here that pulls back with such style as well,
and I wondered, if ever music created something so picturesque, then this must
be the track that does so.
The multi-instrumental collective that lays a tapestry of
tone here, manifested a wonderful sense of bright thoughts and deep
remembrances on the composition Shades
of Memory. A flowing onward energy can be found here, the subtle use of
brass and strings were simply delightful to heighten the piano to even greater
Diversity is our next track and here we have a
tranquil and an easy on the mind solo performance by the artist. A crafted
presentation indeed by Masako and
also with a remarkable sense of emotional energy too. This is one of those
pieces that simply drift in and around you.
We now drift into the calmer yet deeper waters of the album
and as we do so we come across a track piece that is transcendent and called Year of Love. This is a song that is also quite
haunting in structure, made even more so by the angelic vocalisations and wind
instrumentation contained within, Masako
connects the dots between the piano with instrumentation genre and new age with
The almost symphonic beginning to this next piece was so
charming and deeply moving, and entitled Aquifer.
There is a delicacy here on our penultimate offering that is so mystical and
magical; here is a composition that you could easily get lost within, the
repeating motif from the artist drives the arrangement with such a purpose,
that one could imagine water bursting from a spring and trickling down over
rocks and woodlands, the most inventive and crafted track of the release
Our last road home comes courtesy of Masako’s creation named Wisdom
of the Heart. The perfect ending track indeed, its energetic and empowering
tones were mixed sublimely, with a touch that was as crafted as a master
painter putting the last dabs of paint upon the canvas, and of course in doing
so, wraps up this wonderful album with the most colourful piece you would ever
wish to conclude with.
Wanderlust is another album in the ever growing
catalogue of brilliant releases created by pianist Masako. Her charm filled performances are all so beautifully played
and performed, that it really is a simple pleasure to allow yourself to enjoy
these timeless reveries and lose yourself in its beauty. Wanderlust is without doubt an album created by a sparkling talent,
and that talent is called Masako.