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Akira Kosemura – 88 Keys Review

The quiet night of a man and his piano

Sounds like…

A flowing stream of piano keys gently flowing through a sunset village.

The review

Circumstances have tempted Akira Kosemura to the dark side of composition writing. Kosemura usually chooses to release semi structured or completely improvisational piano music but during 2020 this wasn’t an option for him. The composer had to suspend his current music plans due to the pandemic and instead found himself alone in his home studio.

The result is ’88 Keys’. There are 14 beautiful pieces recorded intimately with the piano hammers nuzzling the listener’s ear under the warm ivory glow. The pieces are connected by a reflective feel and one of quiet but assured beauty. Akira Kosemura has a knack for writing rolling melodies that tumble down the notes and octaves like a trickling stream. Delicate cascades ever flowing. For me, this is the reason why ’88 Keys’ is a resounding success and easily my favourite Akira Kosemura work to date. I often find improvisations are technically impressive but sometimes I yearn for a stable hook. This album brings that hook.

akira kosemura photo

Tracks like ‘Wavering Heart’, ‘Spiral’ and ‘Asymptote’ all unravel like a pitter-patter of tiny feet. Both beautiful and distinctively Japanese in its respectful tinge of sadness, the music flows effortlessly over its 35-minute length. There is no trickery here, it is just Akira and his piano and you are in the room as he plays. It is like a very polished demo scene recording and that slightly unpolished room noise gives the recording a human character.

If you need something to soothe the day away or just something to aide quiet reflection or moments of rest, ’88 Keys’ is a great record to reside in. Understated. Impactful. A childlike cartwheel across the upper octaves. Let’s hope we can keep Akira on this side of the composition fence for a little longer.

Recommended track: Asymptote

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Akira Kosemura - 88 Keys

8

8.0/10

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