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(57 min, ThisCD)
TRACK LIST: 1. Redra 33:00 2. Andra 11:28 3. Endre De Fase 13:23 All tracks: by Jeronimo. Produced & engineered by L. Seixas. SOLO PILOT: Samuel Jeronimo - piano; mallets; electronics
Prolusion. This is the debut solo album by the 25 year-old multi-instrumentalist and composer Samuel JERONIMO, hailing from Portugal. Before, he played electric guitar in the Progressive Rock band Mystery Of Grace, whose repertoire included all-original songs and Samuel's renditions of the works of Beethoven, Mozart, Mussorgsky, Grieg, Paganini and Vivaldi.
Analysis. Simply and unpretentiously, Samuel compiled the album's title of those tracks presented. The first and the longest of them, the 33-minute Redra, is the best, although the beginning didn't fill me with enthusiasm, to say the least. The processed, repetitive percussion sounds running in the course of the first five minutes, are incredibly monotonous. I had time to get tired while I listened to them, and then I thought that the entire thing is probably about that stupid electronic minimalism. Unexpectedly, Jeronimo the Musician replaced Jeronimo the Mechanic to perform a living, amazingly impressive concerto of neoclassical music for piano and vibraphone. Since all this brilliance continued during nearly half an hour, I've become imbued with a deep respect to the Maestro, expecting more great things of him. However, the further events showed that the over-indulgence for modern technologies might entail ruinous consequences even for those with natural composition and performance talent. Samuel plays piano in the middle of the next track, but it's mostly filled with taped, looped, sequenced, cycled and all the like exclusively mechanical sounds. At best, Andra can be defined as a medley of excessive minimalism, spacey trance-like and piano classical music. I don't know what Endre De Fase means, but I would have called the last track Triumph of the Falsity. Have you ever heard a clockwork classical music? Welcome, it's here. Samuel performed a few fast classical-like passages on piano, mixed them, then drove the mess into a sequencer and started it up, just having pressed the button. I just could not listen to it to the end upon the second spin. The most brutal Death Metal is much more living than this terrible brood of robotization of classical music. Not just dead music, but a monstrous zombie awaits the listener on this path. The classical composers would have turned over in their coffins if they had heard this.
Conclusion. So, this CD is half-and-half about a living classical music and something trance-like, which is terribly, unbelievably monotonous. The contents are absolutely incompatible, like black and white. Perhaps it was intended to please two different audiences, but it should have been considered that the potential listeners too radically differ from each other to be happy about this nonsensical offer. Come back to the real world, to your roots, Samuel, if it's still not too late.
VM: February 2, 2005
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