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Album Review: In the Wake
Ann Sweeten
Cover image of the album In the Wake by Ann Sweeten
In the Wake
Ann Sweeten
2011 / Orange Band Records
53 minutes
Review by Michael Debbage
Ann Sweeten’s first collaboration with producer Will Ackerman occurred back in 2007 when she released the impressive Grey Sky and Bittersweet. It was a very reflective creation that was followed up by the equally impressive Just This Side Of Spring. Needless to say In the Wake continues this creative streak spotlighting Sweeten’s signature style of flowing piano performance.

The album opens with the gorgeous “Was It Yesterday?” as she gently glides and caresses her keys as Ackerman lightly strokes an atmospheric embellishment on his guitar. Add Trisha Craig on the flute and you will find an impeccable recital of musical minds. Equally impressive and similar in execution is the follow up track “Falling Leaves” with the flute replaced with a gentle English Horn from Akane Setiawan. The tender fire also heats up on “Out On Embers” where this time Ackerman gently graces the record again as a performer with his light and unobtrusive embellishments. While Sweeten for the most part collaborates in her musical performance, she does not hesitate to be somewhat vulnerable by being simply Sweeten and her Steinway Baby Grand. These rare but poignant moments can be found on the title track and the more introspective “Metamorphosis”.

Whether flying solo or collaborating, In the Wake is once again another impressive recording from this expressive pianist.
May 5, 2012
More reviews of Ann Sweeten albums
Cover image of the album The Gathering II by Ann Sweeten
(contributing artist)