A cornucopia of catchy melodies and hypnotic music from the king of minimalist piano.
Jeroen van Veen has won international success with albums of Satie, Pärt, Glass and Riley. These are only some of the most significant composers whose work he has recorded for Brilliant Classics in building a library on record of minimalist piano music. Simplicity, repetition and appealing melody are the qualities shared by all the composers who subscribe to this aesthetic, and they underlie van Veen’s own compositions.
Although subtitled Volume 2, this is the third album to focus exclusively on the pianist as composer. Books 1 and 2 of his Minimal Piano Preludes were reissued on a 2CD set (BC95383) in 2016, and won high praise from MusicWeb International: ‘Both spectacular and simple, these pieces all have bags of content and an underlying surge of joy in creation and performance that is irresistible.’ Further preludes feature in a 5CD box of his piano music (BC9454) and this sequel takes us up to Minimal Prelude No.60, a ‘tango for organ’.
‘All my music is about time and space,’ says van Veen in a booklet essay. ‘The duration of music is an essential part of the concept in my music. The concept of music, specifically my minimal oriented music, only can exist in time. The slow progression, building of the material, the motifs and the search for new sounds is audible in this new box.’ All the works featured here were composed between 2010 and 2018.
Continuum (CD1) is a concertante work for piano and flute octet. Incanto (CD2) is another CD-length piece, entirely composed in an unusual 11/8 time signature. Ripalmania (CD3) is written for six pianos, a scoring which creates an entrancing effect. In Velvet Piano (CD6) van Veen explores the timbral possibilities of pianos prepared with objects after the style of John Cage, though without the American composer’s aim of disconcerting the listener. The final disc is a celebration of minimalist jazz, in which the border between composition and improvisation almost vanishes.
Jeroen van Veen about his own piano music: “All my music is about time and space. The duration of music is an essential part of the concept in my music. Time goes by so quickly in these modern times that it has become an exclusive privilege to people. The concept of music, specifically my minimal oriented music, only can exist in time. The slow progression, the building of the material, the motifs and the search for new sounds is audible in this new box”.
This set contains music ranging from one piano, two pianos, piano and keyboards, organ, up till 6 pianos.
Jeroen van Veen established himself as “The leading exponent of minimalism today” (Fanfare), “Jeroen van Veen has been a powerhouse in the piano world” (Musicweb). His numerous recordings for Brilliant Classics include works by Glass, Reich, Ten Holt, Pärt, Satie, Tiersen, Einaudi, Preisner and many others.