Emily’s Song is an elegant sounding CD that features a wonderfully talented pianist, Alex Clements, who displays a magical touch with an inspirational solo piano performance. A product of our times, Clements borrows from the best in classical, contemporary, jazz and world flavours, he blends them together and delivers them up in an enchanting and delightful manner.
On "A Song For Ethan" composed by Clements for his son, he indicates in the liner notes that he finds amazement in the strengths displayed by his son. The song has a beautiful melody and finds Clements exploring the keyboards full range of emotions, with the tinkling of raindrops on windows and childhood nursery rhymes, hinted at in the foundation of the melody. The listener is transported through this range of emotion, joy, sadness, excitement and mystery.
The next song "Inspired By.... " starts almost as a continuation of the previous song. You have to check the track to make sure it’s a new song such is the fluidity of Clements playing. Another well-written song with Clements playing in a style reminiscent of Keith Jarrett. This song set to a medium-paced tempo with the rhythm played on the left hand while the right hand plays some very impressive runs with a grand full sound.
"Emily’s Song," another family member tribute tune, is a gorgeous blend of traditional blues and jazz. The song has a moderate tempo and a swinging rhythm. The number is played beautifully solo and would be outstanding as a trio piece. Picture a trio in the style of Oscar Peterson, Ray Brown and Herb Ellis and you get the idea of where I’m coming from.
The CD features two Michele Legrand compositions, "Pieces Of Dreams" and "You Must Believe In Spring." Clements maintains a warm, touching, yet cool approach in his interpretations. The emotion is always under control and held in check, the technique is flawless.
"I Love You Porgy" by Gershwin and Heyward is as the liner notes imply a tribute to the solo piano of Bill Evans, another cool and technically flawless pianist. The Clements version is one of the finest renditions I have heard. The song allows or motivates Clements to add more spirit and emotion to his playing adding tasteful trills and making wise use of dynamics, silence and accentuation with chords slightly off the beat and with a slight harmonic dissonance. A wonderfully touching and magical piece that has you sighing with pleasure.
The final song on the CD "Waltz For Peace" leaves you wanting more as every good CD should. With a taste of what could be, Clements lays down some magnificent fills, within an imaginative melody line that floats and sways. The song builds to a crescendo and gradually fades back to the intro verse in a melancholy way.
A fine offering of solo piano from an exceptional pianist. I would have liked the sound to have been hotter, it plays very soft and light next to a Jarrett CD set at the same levels.