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Album Review: Senses
Matt Bachrach
Cover image of the album Senses by Matt Bachrach
Matt Bachrach
2003 / Bachrach Productions
43 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Senses is an ensemble recording with pianist Matt Bachrach and his seven-member band as well as several guest artists. I have really enjoyed Bachrach’s solo piano recordings, and I like parts of this one, but some of it seems unfinished or even like it was meant to be an accompaniment to a singer or some other soloist. Instrumentation includes piano, percussion, bass, organ, guitar, trumpet, and violin. The musical stylings are varied, with jazz, blues, flamenco, and other influences. “Touch” is a piano solo, and is one of the better tracks. Inspired by his grandfather’s eccentric hobby of collecting pianos and storing them wherever he could find space, Bachrach tells a warm and loving story. “In Trance-it” hints at Yanni’s influence with a Middle Eastern feeling and Thano Sahnas on bouzouki (not “Bazookie” as the liner notes state!). “Springs” is mostly piano with bits of synth accompaniment as well as bass and percussion. It has a nice energy and flow. “Innocence” is a beautiful piano solo that is reflective and introspective - definitely one of the best tracks in the collection. “Simunye” is a Zulu word that means “we are one.” This piece is more ambient and abstract than the others with piano and violin playing a free-form duet that is both gentle and evocative - very nice! “Spanish Dance” includes Jesse McGuire on trumpet and Thano Sahnas on classical guitar. This piece ends the album with a lively and upbeat Latin mood. I half expected someone to call out “hot hot hot!” Overall, this is an interesting and very enjoyable album - a few of the tracks just don’t quite get off the ground. “Senses” is available from www.mattbachrach.com.
January 1, 2003
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