The Way The Story Goes EVI 2013 / Edward Von Ichter/ Edward Blumenthal 43 minutes
When EVI contacted me about reviewing his debut solo piano album, "The Way The Story Goes," he mentioned that his playing was “clumsy” and “inconsistent,” so while I accepted the CD for review, my expectations were not high. My hope was of perhaps discovering an artist who plays with a raw, visceral style and an original approach to the piano. Untrained musicians are not uncommon, but I was shocked at the beauty and fluidity as well the deep emotional expression in EVI’s music. He explained to me that he bought a baby grand piano some thirty years ago and although he couldn’t play anything on it, he discovered that “if I let my fingers drift along the keys, I could express pieces of songs, that over time, I could express to their completion. And so it began.” Over the years, EVI composed quite a number of pieces and apparently recorded them so he wouldn’t forget them. Two years ago, his wife converted a number of old tapes to CD format, reminding EVI of some of the music he had forgotten and rekindling the flame. With the encouragement of family and friends (some classically-trained musicians), EVI relearned his music and recorded it as "The Way The Story Goes." Interestingly, EVI hears his music as orchestrations, not solo piano, and this music is in the process of being recorded with a full string ensemble. I love it as solo piano and am more than impressed with the music as is!
EVI also explained to me that the musical composition, from start to finish, is a story that expresses a drama of life and that the song titles are a poem describing the drama. “Life dramas are fraught with mistakes, so I left many of mine in as well because it felt more raw and real.” I have listened to this album quite a number of times, and although I’ve heard a few discordances, I couldn’t identify anything that sounded like a mistake.
"The Way The Story Goes" begins with “From Across the Room,” a romantic prelude that sets the tone of the album. Some of the phrases from this piece appear in the other pieces in one form or another. The graceful, dreamy “At First Sight” expresses the hope of new love. At this point in the album, I was hooked! “That Night” is a tender love song that seems to be dancing on air. “Be Home Soon” is a bit more melancholy and full of longing. “Another’s Smile” goes somewhat darker and more dramatic, but is still very smooth and soothing - one of my favorites. I also really like “All Is Lost,” which isn’t nearly as bleak as its title. It seems to be looking inward and working something out. “Missing Laughter” seems to be reminiscing, again with longing and deep emotion and “Ever After” is the happy ending to the story.
If you like graceful, passionate solo piano music that comes from the heart, you need to check this one out! "The Way The Story Goes" is available from Amazon, iTunes, and CD Baby. Very highly recommended!