A Piano Collection
2020 / A Mighty Universe
Review by Kathy Parsons
A Piano Collection is the seventh full-length album from Mexican pianist/composer/guitarist Edo Sanz. Each of the ten original piano solos tells a story without words. The stories range from political upheaval to traveling in Ireland to the rise of the Aztec Empire to human trafficking, and the music is as varied and compelling as the events that inspired it. Some of the pieces appeared on previous albums with other instrumentation in addition to the piano, but all ten tracks are solo piano on this album.
Edo Sanz was born into a family of artists in Mexico City, started playing the piano at the age of four and began composing music at six. He has released several singles as well as his albums and is well-versed in a variety of playing and composing styles.
A Piano Collection begins with “Alone,” which, despite a title that could indicate sadness, is actually rather joyful. I know that I sometimes look forward to times when I’m alone and this piece seems to share that sentiment. “Dance of the Marionettes” refers to the “endless battle between governments and their citizens, not knowing exactly who the marionettes really are.” A very timely piece, it has several different themes that range from quiet and thoughtful to faster and more intense - a fascinating musical journey. “Road To Connemara” is a melody Sanz “caught” when he and his wife first visited Connemara, on the west side of Ireland. “An enchanted place” on the Galway Bay, the music tells the story of “this mystical place.” Relaxed and melodic with a touch of mystery, it’s one of my favorite pieces on the album. “Tribute” was inspired by and is dedicated to the rise of the Aztec Empire and the gods of that time (between c.1345 and 1521). Majestic yet graceful and haunting, it’s another favorite. The charming “Closing Hours” has a lighthearted, playful feel that slows and becomes more subdued near the end. The opening theme of “e-Motions” is very dark and mysterious followed by a shorter burst of energy. The slower theme returns and then a combination of the two themes merge to create a slow melody with a fast accompaniment. The closing theme of the piece is high on the piano keyboard and sounds a bit like a music box that stops abruptly at the end. “La Capa” tells the story of Sanz’s uncle, one of the best Flamenco dancers of his time - a passionate and loving tribute. “‘M,M,M’ stands for any name in any language, could be Mary, Masha, Maria etc.” and tells a story of human slave trafficking. Dramatic and powerful, it never loses hope for change and a better life. My favorite track on the album is “Fractal No. 21,” which reminds me in a few places of Chopin’s posthumous Nocturne #20 in C# minor. The piece has several themes that are different in mood and style, yet they all work together really well.
A Piano Collection shows many sides of Edo Sanz’s musicality. It is available from Amazon, iTunes and CD Baby as well as various streaming sites.
January 30, 2020