Having performed on the intro to Adele’s Hometown Glory, among other achievements, Neil Cowley has become one of the most listened-to pianists in the world. When you witness his recent 2Seas Session, it’s easy to see why. His music has something inherently characterful about it, almost as if he has somehow reinvented the piano and remolded its creative reach in some new, unpredictable way.
The Sharks Of Competition is a performance that emerges as a partly jazz inspired, partly haunting and disjointed, experimental piece. The chaotic drums that run alongside of the melodies and indeed the meandering, high energy bass line that adds further detail to the mix, create this rather relentless arena of movement and volume, within which the instrumental story-line from Cowley’s piano playing winds its way into your consciousness in a striking and mildly unsettling manner.
At the same time as all of this, there’s something incredibly cool about the composition and the performance. By the end of the experience, this arrangement of notes, this overall progression through the riffs and sections of the song, makes certain to linger in your mind for quite some time. There’s actually a rhythmic break during the latter half of the track, at which point you’re likely to realise how swept away by the energy you had been. It feels briefly bare and you eagerly anticipate the return or ‘drop’ back to the manic vibrancy of before. 2Seas Sessions have done a brilliant job with this one, the reflection of the double bass player at the height of his energetic outpouring is just perfect.
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