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Album Review: Remembering
Bernward Koch
Cover image of the album Remembering by Bernward Koch
Bernward Koch
2015 / Real Music
63 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Remembering is the seventh Real Music release from German pianist/composer Bernward Koch. One of Real’s most popular and enduring artists, Koch has been creating graceful, uplifting music for several decades now, releasing albums on the label since 1998 (he released his debut, Flowing, in 1989). A classically-trained and internationally-loved artist, Koch’s music is always sweetly optimistic yet expressive and complex enough to keep it interesting with repeated plays. It creates a warm and soothing sonic atmosphere for a quiet dinner, reading, or simply relaxing since the music has no hard edges or abrupt changes. Koch composed, arranged, produced and performed all thirteen tracks and appears on piano, keyboards, synthesizer, guitar, bass glockenspiel, cymbals, and gong (gong?). Koch’s wife, Christiane Bohm, a strong part of Koch’s signature sound, appears on flute. Christoph Koch appears on 12-string guitar, drums, and percussion; and Moritz Koch appears on electric guitar on the closing track.

Remembering begins with the title track, a gentle and bittersweet piece that sets the tone of the album to soft pastels and a delicate touch. “New Morning” expresses the optimistic possibilities of a fresh start as well as the stillness of daybreak. “My Secret” picks up the tempo a bit with subtle percussion and the magic of lightly tinkling bells. This is definitely a happy secret! The serene “Over the Fields” is my favorite track. It conveys the feeling of floating over a beautiful landscape, completely relaxed and safe. “Longing For Night in Summer” is a gorgeous piece that would seem very classical if it wasn’t performed on modern keyboards with ethereal as well as instrumental sounds - haunting and elegant. The perfectly-titled “Time of Innocence” is light and carefree with gentle percussion, wordless vocals, piano and keyboard. “First Flowers” expresses the magic of spring and nature’s annual rebirth. Simple yet heartfelt, I can visualize time-lapse photography of blossoms opening as I listen to this one. “Floating Feather” is another favorite - so relaxed and effortless! “Through the Universe” is an expansive beauty that is more fully-orchestrated with guitars, piano, keyboards, light percussion, and atmospheric sounds - a very smooth and expressive piece that bring the album to a peaceful close.

Bernward Koch continues his long and illustrious career with another charming and relaxing collection of original confections that will soothe the mind and uplift the spirit. It is available from RealMusic.com, Amazon, and iTunes. Recommended for quiet moments and de-stressing!
August 16, 2015
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