Emilie Levienaise-Farrouch: Like Water Through the Sand (130701, 2015)January 8, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment
French pianist/composer Emilie Levienaise-Farrouch’s first non-soundtrack album is a stunning audio suite which blends her vibrant piano playing with string quartet and electronics. “The Sum of Our Flaws” is all graceful, melodic pianos with a hint of cricket-like chirping in the background. “Tulsi” begins with a rainfall of plucked strings which are arranged into a slowly growing rhythm, developing softly pounding drums and synths. “Cotidal Lines” places the mournful-sounding string quartet up front and center, submerging piano in the background, while “Hands Closed Together” is nearly all piano, beginning calmly and rising in tempo in its second half. “Vestiges” begins with more distant-sounding piano, sounding fuller as the strings come in. “Persephone” and “Scale of Volatility” are both framed by electronic pulses, with the latter being faintly kissed by dubby electronic manipulation. “Six of Swords” seems like an ecstatic variation on the previous song’s piano melody. “Sublimation” returns to weepy strings, and the album ends with the calm, reflective “Strelka”. Clocking in at only 39 minutes, the album is a compact, easily enjoyable listen.