Roger Eno, The Turning Year


Roger Eno steps forward with this, a well-paced solo album of compositions and performances of his works new and older, It is titled The Turning Year  (Deutsche Grammophon 486  2024). The main portion of the album features Roger’s piano. Some tracks nicely add the string ensemble Scoring Berlin, for string ensemble moments and in  tandem with Roger’s piano. Within this melange there are some truly ravishing sequences that if you are like me open your musical wave lengths to dreamy soundscapes that can bring poetic nocturnal musings and feelings. Alternately there are some whose more tightly coiled repetitions have the mesmeric effect of a dance of magical spinning note dervishes that nevertheless remain succinct for a balanced program. Ultimately you get a nicely flowing cornucopia of well aligned musical steady-states. 

The music does not exactly undergo development in the old sort of classicism of a Papa Haydn so much as it evolves a bit in time as you listen.. It sometimes flows with an almost singer-songwriter pianism, though perhaps more unfolding in one flow than sectioning in a song form layout. It works in any case.

It is the sort of music you might put on for anybody and they would no doubt not object to it, in its mellifluous sonics that have an appeal that might attract more pedestrian ears as well as discerning Modernists, but so what of it? Perhaps one  should applaud the accessibility of such things, knowing of course it is one kettle of fish and not the entire catch of the sea in the end,.The slow and at times statuesque poetics from strings and piano bring in a cinematic dreamspell not quite typical of anything else, so all good to my mind.

Pastoral poetics that unfold in a sensuous carpet of harmo-homophony? Yes, and who says we should not be allowed such recreational holidecks of festive sound? I recommend this if you need to take your ears on a little fishing and re-creation trip. Bravo this.

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