The CD opens and closes with hauntingly beautiful arrangements of the title song, rich in its dark minor key moodiness. "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel" is one of the oldest Christmas carols still sung today, but in capable hands such as Nevue's the song is both ancient and contemporary, full of deep emotion that is ageless. "Away in A Manger" is a song that is often the first Christmas song learned in Sunday School, and Nevue introduces his lovely version with a one-hand melody line, emphasizing the children's view of this sweet song. He then brings in some of the other melodies (there are at least 40 melodies that go with this song!) that are often used, making each verse a little different. "Watching Their Flocks" is one of the two original pieces, and is quietly introspective, possibly suggesting the peaceful solitude of shepherds tending to their flocks late into the night - very beautiful. "Joy to the World" opens with a long, improvisational intro and then comes into the song itself at the chorus - a very interesting and effective approach. "Silent Night" is pure peacefulness. "Coventry Carol" is one of my favorites. Nevue again opens the piece with a long prelude that is mysterious and dark, and his interpretation of the piece itself is emotionally charged - a wonderful arrangement. "The Gift" is the second original piece, and it is also a real beauty in its simple honesty and gentle message. "God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen" is the most upbeat piece in the collection, with a jazzy treatment - starting out slowly with a rubato rhythm, and evolving into several variations. Great stuff! "O Come Emmanuel" is one of my favorite Christmas albums now, and I highly recommend it!
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With a piano style somewhere between Chopin and George Winston, David Nevue brings melody and heart back to instrumental music. Perhaps Heartsong Review said it best when they described his music as "hauntingly romantic." David's music introduces us to a wilderness of musical ideas which the listener becomes anxious to explore.
Interestingly enough, if you ask David about his musical background he might surprise you. He comes not from a background of polished piano music, but grew up a typical 1980's teenager strongly under the influences of such progressive rock artists as Rush, Pink Floyd, and Kansas. David pursued rock music as a career throughout his college years, playing keyboards for a number of garage bands.
It wasn't until David's college roommate introduced him to the piano music of George Winston that he began to consider a career as a pianist. "Prior to hearing George Winston, my idea of 'solo piano' went no further than classical music, a form a music I've never felt much connection with. Winston's impressionistic style was at that time unlike any music I had ever heard. My roommate played Winston's music all the time, and it just sort of seeped in. As a result, I found myself playing around with a few melodies at the piano and I just never stopped."
In 1992 David released his first album, 'The Tower.' "At the time I recorded The Tower I was listening to a lot of the band Renaissance. I was really going for that very poetic, artsy, dramatic piano sound." David ...