A new artist to me is always a good thing; I adore listening to new fresh material without any idea of what may roll out before me, and to my surprise I was gifted an opportunity to write a review for one of the most original solo piano albums I have heard for a long time, and called half life by musician and author Catherine Fearns.
This classically trained heavy metal artist adores exploring the avenues of extreme music, this on half life she does sublimely, with the fast paced almost chaotic opening composition entitled Children, and for those of us who have had young ones this music will work well with that narrative of busy, bustling and crazy.
Catherine explores motherhood, the passing of time and all the rich gifts and presents of learning that life just loves to throw up at us, and she does it so well, just listen to the track l'arve, a fluent and rich tapestry of tone and emotion, much like the flow of a full river in autumn.
Then you can bathe in textures of one of my favourite pieces entitled Fluid Dynamics, the cross classical motifs here were deeply fascinating, and somewhere I would like to come back too, then onward into another moment of intrigue entitled Salvage, a piece that contains a real depth to its construction, with moments of sensitivity entwined with the harder elements of tone.
This 12 piece album contains some of the most original solo piano work you’re ever likely to hear, and even a few memories of the late but still great Keith Emerson may drift into focus, like on the offering To The Core for example.
half life by Catherine Fearns is like the albums constructive creative source, an album that deserves to be explored, each of the 12 pieces on the release offer a narrative of time passing in a life that many will know well, each composition has been crafted with a reflective hand, and manifested into creation by an artistic flow that is simply undeniable.