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Album Review: Water Music Suite
Glenn Hardy
Cover image of the album Water Music Suite by Glenn Hardy
Water Music Suite
Glenn Hardy
2013 / HardyMuse Productions
69 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Water Music Suite is a collection of ten solo piano improvisations by Glenn Hardy, an artist who is always impossible to categorize (a quality I really appreciate!!!). Hardy started playing the piano at the age of four and continued his studies into college at The University of the Pacific Conservatory in CA. Focused on classical music most of that time, Hardy heeded a suggestion from his father that he learn blues and boogie-woogie when he was about eleven, and that set the wheels in motion to explore other forms of music including jazz, improvisation and ragtime. Some of the pieces on this album fall into specific styles, but most are an eclectic amalgam that makes Hardy’s own style distinctive and unique. Hardy comments about this album: “These pieces are piano improvisations of a type I usually do at the end of the day, often after playing and recording abstract minimalist/motor music and other weird things. After I get that stuff out of my system, I put on the headphones and zone out into the wee hours of the morning. This music is tonal, structured, and listener-friendly. It will fit nicely into the New Age category.”

Water Music Suite begins with “Overture,” a slow, easy-going introductory work that alerts the listener that this is no ordinary solo piano CD. Warm and accessible, it’s not ear candy! Hardy’s remarkable playing chops refrain from pure showmanship, preferring to shine via clarity and heartfelt expression. “Sunrise” is somewhat more ambient without aimless meandering. Feelings of optimism and the anticipation of a new day imbue the music with warm sonic colors with no rough edges. “Impromptu” takes on a classical style with strong Baroque influences that weave in and out of more contemporary themes - a fascinating work and one of my favorites! “Remembrance 1” has the timeless ease of reflecting and reliving people and events from the past. “Wellspring” is another favorite. A bit more dramatic than some of the other pieces, it makes me think of a deeply personal soliloquy without words. “Cascade” has a powerful energy that sends Hardy’s nimble fingers dancing all over the keyboard. Joyful and upbeat, this one can leave you a little breathless! The gorgeous “Sunset” is a peaceful and soothing closing to an exceptional album. Short passages of vibrant color and bright sparkling tones fade back into tranquility as the piece evolves, expressing the profound quiet that can come with twilight and nightfall. It’s a stunning piece!

Water Music Suite is another great album from Glenn Hardy. It is available from hardymuse.com, Amazon, CD Baby, and iTunes. Recommended!!!
December 7, 2013