composer instrumental mood music New Age piano review

Charlotte Martin – Monotonous Night Review

Improvising devotion

Part two of a three part piano series, Charlotte Martin’s move from piano based pop rock into something more classical intrigues me. ‘Monotonous Night’ is a 70 minute one take improvisational piece, broken up into 13 sections.

Charlotte Martin
Charlotte Martin

The entire album has a wonderful reverb to it which makes the piano sound devotional and soft. This really helps each piece because quite often the music is slowly moving around sections and motifs. It feels very ‘new age’ in its approach but there are hints of Charlotte Martin’s more rockier sides that scramble out in small glimpses. There are so many phrases throughout the piece that sound like they are ballads and heartbreaking pop songs in waiting. Taking the title track, for example, there are about 5 different distinct sections and they all could work separately as individual songs with vocals. I’m just not so sure if they fit together as a compositional piano piece. Monotonous Night also feels improvisational. You can hear the tentative nature and flickering of emotion as the music takes form. It’s very much a personal taste thing as to whether that’s a good or bad thing.

I think for me, this album doesn’t hit the mark though mainly because I came to it with expectations from Charlotte Martin’s previous singer/songwriter music career. Her compositions are close enough and distinctively hers because she has a certain style to her piano playing and chord structures. Combined with her beautiful voice and ability to wring every drop of emotion out of it, she’s a powerhouse. I hear the music in Montonous Night, and to a lesser extent her previous piano solo albums ‘Clear Blue Sky’ and ‘Piano Trees’, and it feels missing a piece of the puzzle. If you are after a relaxed and moody new age piano collection though – then you’ll love it. I think I’m a victim of my own personal history with Charlotte’s music and so I don’t feel like I can judge the album fairly.

So, after all that ramble – I think I’m happy to recommend ‘Monotonous Night’ to classical, new age music lovers and certainly to listeners of Yoga and mindfulness music. There’s plenty to mine through and if you feel the flow, you’ll really enjoy it. Whilst it may not have clicked for me personally, there’s no denying the technical prowess on show. Plus or minus 1.5 off the score depending if you like background yoga music.

Recommended track: Monotonous Night

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Charlotte Martin - Monotonous Night

6

6.0/10

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