Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Keiko Shichijo - Komitas Vardapet: Six Dances [Makkum Records 017 / Platenbakerij 006]

And now - something completely different and something way beyond our musical comfort zone although we've reviewed other releases by the Dutch imprint Makkum Records before which now teams up with the Platenbakerij for the release of pianist Keiko Shichijo's EP / mini album "Komitas Vardapet: Six Dances" which is a new interpretation of a cycle of six dances originally written and performed by Komitas Vardapet, born as Soghomon Soghomanyan in 1869, in 1906. After being forgotten for long these dances were now rediscovered by the Amsterdam-based piano player and performed on a historic instrument built in 1880 which perfectly matches the timeframe and era of the original composer. This said, this bunch of miniatures - with only the last tune "Shoror" exceeding, and more than doubling, the three minutes mark at all - are defo a gem for all piano purists and classically trained connaisseurs but might come across as a slightly puzzling surprise to those who've discovered Makkum Records through their engagement in and focus on African music in recent years.

Album artwork on Instagram!


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