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Chilly Gonzales - Solo Piano III

  by Lisa Torem

published: 3 / 11 / 2018

Chilly Gonzales - Solo Piano III
Label: XXXV
Format: CD


Canadian musician Chilly Gonzales completes his iconic trilogy with 'Solo Piano III', which will appeal to both jazz buffs and classical purists

Chilly Gonzales has successfully completed his 'Solo Piano' trilogy with 'Solo Piano III' and completed a multi-city U.K. tour. The Grammy-winning Canadian pianist/composer is acclaimed for his technical prowess and creative ingenuity. He has collaborated with Jarvis Cocker, Feist and Drake and more currently with Ibeyi and Toddla T. Says Gonzales about his latest work: “It is a reflection of all the beauty and ugliness around us.” That said, 'Solo Piano III' leaves one agitated and breathless. The brief compositions vary in intensity and complexity. Wielding a strong pianistic tool kit that encompasses classical and multiple forms of jazz, the pianist’s works lift the spirit and invite sensitive dialogue with each play. Regardless of whether he is attempting to be transcendental or braggadocios, Chilly wholeheartedly evokes and emotes yet remains consistently transparent. ’Pretenderness’ conveys a haunting aesthetic yet is keenly accessible. ‘Cactus Impromptu’ is a whimsical brain teaser. ‘Famous Hungarians’ coarsely rips out the gut. ‘Treppen’ with its childlike simplicity subtly washes over the soul. ‘Present Tense’ gives a vibrant nod to Daft Punk, slyly embedding a favourite passage into the cerebral mix. ‘Prelude in C Sharp Major’ contorts Bach’s time signature; no apologies needed. ‘Chico’ is an incandescent romp, whilst the billowy ‘Nimbus’ finds the master sweeping over the keys like an overgrown feather duster. ‘Present Tense’ is a spring flower in bloom. ‘Be Natural’ recalls but refuses to mimic Debussy. ‘Ellis Eye’ is wistfully nostalgic, a sweet counterpart to the majestic ‘Lost Ostinato’. On the other hand, ‘Kopfkino’ is surly and snarly, a composition unlikely to butt heads with the anthemic ‘October 3'. ‘Blizzard in B Flat Minor’ is appropriately named and keeps its promise until the final cadence, after a series of exhaustive turns. Yet there are times when Chilly doesn’t stray too far from the fray, as in ‘Whist,’ which could be safely tucked inside the Great American Songbook, no questions asked. Although it is satisfying to realize that Chilly Gonzales has completed a lofty goal with the achievement of this solo piano trilogy, the throat may still tighten and hands may still sweat at the very thought of its finality, leaving the faithful aficionado to say, ‘Please sir, I want some more…”

Track Listing:-
1 Treppen
2 Pretenderness
3 Prelude In C Sharp Major
4 Famous Hungarians
5 Chico
6 Nimbus
7 Be Natural
8 Ellis Eye
9 Present Tense
10 Cactus Impromptu
11 Lost Ostinato
12 Blizzard In B Flat Minor
13 October 3rd
14 Kopfkino
15 Whist

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Solo Piano II (2012)
Exceptional collection of instrumental piano ballads from Canadian-born, but German-based multi-instrumentalist, Chilly Gonzales

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