So far, Flemish composer Kevin Imbrechts has created three studio albums for his Illuminine project which debuted in 2015. As lovely as they each are in their own right, it has been remarkable to see how profoundly malleable Imbrechts’ compositions have proven in the hands of other artists reinterpreting the material. The first two albums were each followed up by a full-length “reworks” releases by a thoughtfully curated group of artists representing a wide range of styles from folk-pop (Jan Swerts, Will Samson, Message to Bears) to indie classical (Sebastian Plano, Lambert, Julien Marchal) and ambient (Benoit Pioulard, Stijn Hüwels).
Following #3 (Ferryhouse, 2018), Imbrechts decided to continue that pattern but with a little twist. While his own albums are all composed on the guitar, he says he always dreamed how they would sound on the piano and so he invited 18 of his favorite artists on the instrument to recompose songs of their choice from all three albums for a single volume which has just been released under the title Dear, Piano.
The album has been my companion and soundtrack for the better part of the past weekend and I found it so effortlessly and elegantly beautiful, it is hard to believe that the piano was not the instrument that these songs were composed for. Each artist that makes up the globe-spanning roster recasts their selected piece in their own distinctive manner, but with Imbrechts’ compositional voice as the common thread, it all binds together as a consummate whole.
Below is a representative sampling of three tracks from the album which have been set to video.
The complete list of artists is as follows: Jakob Lindhagen (Sweden), Jameson Nathan Jones (USA), Affan (UK), Blurstem (USA), Sjors Mans (Netherlands), Sergio Díaz De Rojas (Peru/Spain), Thomas E Rouch (Australia), Akira Kosemura (Japan), Kevin Corcoran (Ireland), Lake Isabel (USA), Simeon Walker (UK), Jonny Southard (UK), John Hayes (USA), Muriël Bostdorp (Netherlands), Dominique Charpentier (France), Plïnkï Plønkï (UK), Christopher Dicker (Australia), Luis Álvarez (Spain).
Dear, Piano is now available for digital download and streaming via Ferryhouse Productions.