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Aeby, Stefan: Piano Solo (Intakt)

Spending two days in a recording studio in Berne, pianist Stefan Aeby recorded these 14 short works, a mixture of improvised and composed works using preparations and electronics to evoke a set of diverse recordings, from energetic structural works to evocative lyricism, nothing overstaying its welcome, carrying the listener through an inquisitive and compelling set of ideas.

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product information:

UPC: 7640120193324

Label: Intakt
Catalog ID: INT332
Squidco Product Code: 28035

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: Jewel Case
Recorded at Progr U62, in Bern, Switzerland, in September 2018, by Andre Pousaz and Stefan Aeby.


Stefan Aeby-piano, prepared piano

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Artist Biographies:

"piano / rhodes / composition

born / né / geboren: 1979

some lessons with /quelques cours avec / einige lektionen bei: jean christophe cholet, marc copland, patrick müller, don friedman, art lande.

master of arts in: art history and musicology / histoire de l'art et musicologie / kunstgeschichte und musikwissenschaft

plays or played with / joue ou a joué avec / spielt oder spielte mit: Frank Tortiller, Gabriele Mirabassi, Rory Stuart, Bob Mintzer, Chris Potter, Claudio Puntin, Clarence Penn, David Pouradier Duteil, Yves Torchinsky, Bänz Oester, Samuel Rohrer, Lisette Spinnler, Claudio Pontiggia, Marcel Papaux, Samuel Blaser, Popol Lavanchy, Gustav, Julien Charlet, Rick Margitza, Patrice Moret, Stéphane Belmondo, Oscar D'Leon, Tom Harrell...

sideman for / membre des groupes / sideman bei: christoph irniger's pilgrim, lisette spinnler 4, sarah büechi shadow garden...

teaching at / enseigne à / unterrichtet in: hemu lausanne / conservatoire de fribourg

touring in / en tournée en / auf tour in: germany, france, ireland, switzerland, holland, belgium, poland, italy, austria, bulgaria, japan, south corea, china, malaysia, senegal, argentina, chile, uruguay, venezuela, haiti...

actually playing with / joue actuellement avec / spielt aktuell mit:

stefan aeby trio (feat stefan aeby, andré pousaz, michi stulz)christoph irnigers pilgrim (feat christoph irniger, dave gisler, raffaele bossard, michi stulz)sarah buechi shadow garden (feat sarah buechi, andré pousaz, lionel friedli)lisette spinnler 4 (feat. lisette spinnler, patrice moret, michi stulz)"

-Stefan Aeby Website (

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track listing:

1. Yume 03:05

2. Song for A. 04:29

3. Misty 05:24

4. Dance on a Cloud 04:05

5. Flingga 04:25

6. Dings 01:20

7. Singing Witches 02:56

8. Or Not 02:52

9. Subway Run 03:45

10. Mr. Pong 02:22

11. Tempus Fugit 02:15

12. Magnetophon 02:12

13. Running Deeper 01:42

14. Yoru 04:49
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"It is a journey that the pianist invites the listener to embark on," writes Alain Drouot, jazz journalist from Chicago. Revealing a panorama of uncharted territories, the opener "Yume" suggests that it will be well worth the trip. Swiss pianist Stefan Aeby's first solo piano recording is the product of three and a half years of incubation and shows an understanding of what can be accomplished when taking advantage of a studio setting. Whether composed or improvised, the pieces all have a common denominator.

All sounds come from the acoustic piano, but they can be distorted or modified through preparation, inserting all kinds of materials inside the instrument, and/or some processing via various electronic devices. This brings out one of Aeby's main traits: his attention to detail. If making a distinctive statement and being forward-looking are at the forefront of Aeby's concerns, he does not forget the tradition as witnessed by his thoughtful re-harmonization of Erroll Garner's "Misty" that he complements with unobtrusive electronic flourishes."-Intakt

"Stefan Aeby's 2018 Intakt release, The London Concert, featured a standard piano trio. A very good trio. On Piano Solo the music is far from standard, and not quite jazz, although it does contain Erroll Garner's Misty. The other 13 pieces on the CD are Aeby compositions, and although most are freely improvised, all feature strong thematic and structural elements.

The recording took place in a rehearsal room in Berne. Aeby plays piano, prepared piano and live electronics. Apparently, he stayed in the studio for two days with the recording equipment switched on and ready to go, day or night, so he could immediately get to work when inspiration struck. The results are diverse and occasionally disorientating. "Subway Run" begins with Aeby rubbing the piano strings in short sweeps, creating a drone that swells and fades like a python that has eaten six small mammals in a row. Gradually, electronics modify the drone, sampling the results and creating a rhythmic loop, to which Aeby adds drone embellishments. The track that follows, Mr Pong, is a brief set of looped episodes through which muffled piano notes emerge in short flurries. It's playful, as are most of the tracks on the CD.

Nothing on Piano Solo is allowed to outstay its welcome. As soon as Aeby has got what he wants, and as much of it as he wants, he brings the proceedings to a close. The only track that tops the five-minute mark is "Misty", played langorously and with great tenderness. Aeby really does have a fine touch. Another wholly melodic track is Flingga. On top of a jaunty, two-chord rhythmic sequence that jumps about like an alien in the arcade game Space Invaders, Aeby overdubs spontaneous runs that fly off the fingertips, nonchalant and joyful. At first, Or Not seems to question its own existence in a series of stop-start phrases, but in the end the feeling of puzzlement is satisfactorily resolved.

Rhythm is often foregrounded in the prepared piano pieces, as it was in John Cage's "Sonatas and Interludes", the instrument becoming an orchestra of tuned percussion. The electronic treatments that Aeby employs broaden the scope even further. What's surprising is that although most tracks are very short and often very different from each other, the music doesn't feel undernourished or bitty, and there's a sense of wholeness to Piano Solo that rewards listening from beginning to end rather than just a track or two at a time."-Brian Marley, London Jazz News

Get additional information at London Jazz News
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