I find everything about this headline; intriguing, from the album’s title to the artists’ names. So, let me introduce you to Jim Klein and Ian Jamison, who certainly is no ordinary duo.
Jim Klein is an abstract artist and painter who has a magnificent art gallery: ‘J Klein Gallery’ in Scottsdale. While Ian Jamison is a business school graduate, they share the same firing passion for music, especially classical. Coming from different backgrounds and experiences, they decided to partner up and release their first set of compositions: “six Preludes for Piano” in 2019. Followed by a series of remarkably unique and creative compositions that mostly revolve around the piano being the main instrument.
“Eight Paintings for Piano” is their latest album release; eight piano compositions that co-relate with eight abstract paintings by Jim Klein. Just like the paintings, the music is modern, abstract, and aesthetically unique. You can surely sense inspiration from different composers like Bach, or even different styles like the classical era’s forms and the dreaminess of the romantic era composers, yet, you’ll undoubtedly witness unmatchable originality and authenticity. Like in the 2nd piece “Fugal,” you will instantly relate to Bach’s compositions and fugues, yet with a softer and more modern twist. The music has softness and tenderness that is apparent throughout the eight pieces; with the choice of melodies and the higher-pitched notes, joined by an intriguing element of playfulness that teases you and keeps you curious. The compositions keep you up on your feet; whenever you get comfortable with a theme, thinking you know what’ll come next, they surprise you with sudden mood and theme shifts, taking the ‘boring’ element completely out of the equation. Like in the first piece: “Lucky Seven”; you will be lured in by the sweet melody, the familiarity of the repetitions, and the drone concept till it takes you to a playful, cheerful, and fun mood, till it goes back to its original tender theme yet ending on a striking tune. Another piece that I found interesting in its form and context was the 3rd one “Three Words”; not because of its melodic motif or harmony but for its structure and how it reminded me of the 2ndmovement of a sonata which is usually in “andante” but what caught me off-guard was the sudden shift in the middle section that reminded me of Bach’s two-part inventions, then moving back to the andante, dreamy theme it once started in. Not to mention how the 4th piece: “Two Little Boys Lost in the Wood,” is telling the story of these boys and their journey through music; with the perfect depiction of fear, excitement, worry, conflict, and enjoyment.
The music is performed by the skilled pianist Katie Hughes whom you will witness playing gracefully in the videos filmed and recorded by Jeremy Quick. This is not an album you want to miss out on!