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Boomkat Product Review:
Australian Adrian Klumpes (moonlighting away from his day job in avant-jazz act Triosk) is probably well aware of all the jazz Stereotypes, but instead of using his solo project to show that he isn't afraid of rocking out, he's poked his head into another genre primed for ridicule - avant-classical. Yep Klumpes has taken his trusty piano and used it as the centre point for 'Be Still', but instead of simply leaving it alone as so many solo piano artists have (Gonzalez and Goldmund to name but two) he chops and distorts it to take what might have sounded like simple compositions into another realm entirely. Stuttering keys and clipped reverbs shimmer and sparkle making dense soundscapes, somewhere in-between the haunted work of Deaf Center and 12k's Kenneth Kirschner, who famously recorded 'Post Piano' with Taylor Deupree. Sadly Klumpes' experiments never quite reach the quality of that record, yet he throws enough ideas down into the ring to make 'Be Still' a worthwhile listening experience. The title track is actually the most successful, as Klumpes keeps his laptop glitches to a minimum, allowing high frequency hisses to gently drift over the gorgeous piano parts and introducing new parts subtly and with a cautious ease. As the album progresses, Klumpes experiments with textured ambience ('Why', 'Give In'), introduces incredibly well measured percussive elements ('Exhale') and ends on a glorious combination of styles with 'Passing Pain', which starts off with an almost Tim Hecker style processed granular wave before slowly introducing the piano which weaves 'Be Still' together. A mixed success, but Klumpes proves to have a distinct voice in the genre of modern electro-acoustic piano music, and when he gets it right you don't forget it easily.