Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Ill-Tempered Klavier by Ben Shive

I love this record (CD for you younger folk). Referring to this as a record is appropriate because it hearkens back to the day when a new music release meant an entire collection of new music from your favorite band or artist. Every song mattered and it's merit wasn't dependent on the success of a single-song download. The Ill-Tempered Klavier by Ben Shive contains songs that matter. I received this CD as a Christmas gift and have listened to it in its entirety probably twenty times since then. I can't craft words that do it justice, but since you need to have something to give you reason to purchase this for your collection, here we go.

The Ill-Tempered Klavier will be satisfying to music fans that bore with the usual 3 minute radio hits. Here you will find tunes that are not unlike the Beatles with the string arrangements swirling in and out of beautiful melodies. Unexpected changes and variance of instruments keeps the listener engaged.
A Name, A Name, A Name sounds like it could have been on the White Album.
Out of Tune is a bouncy tune with an old upright piano sharing his heart. Rise Up is a song of that builds in intensity providing hope for those who believe in a final victory over all evil .
My favorite song on this record is Do You Remember?, a love song that shows the joy of remembering all that has gone into the building of a relationship. Fans of The Beach Boys will quickly notice that this one could have easily been on Pet Sounds, complete with great Brian Wilsonesque harmonies and catchy melody.
My next favorite is New Year which can best be described by considering what would happen if you blended The Alan Parsons Project with Christopher Cross (If you have to ask who these are, then see paragraph 1). Yes, you guessed it....an immediate radio hit because of its simplicity, yet heart level connectivity so all can relate. You will hum along with this one and want to hit repeat and hear it again when it is over.
4th of July is a different take on our independence celebration.
I could go on and on about this record. It is that good. My recommendation is that you download it for only $7 from The Rabbit Room at http://www.rabbitroom.com/ (click on the music tab at the top). Get the lyric sheet from http://www.benshive.com/, grab a cup of coffee, put your headphones and enjoy.

Help this talented musician in continuing to provide quality music. His second release, The Cymbal Crashing Clouds, is now in the making and I can't wait to hear it.

1 comment:

Bob said...

OK Jon you got me curious.