If you are a fan of the piano, especially jazz piano with occasional classical touches, you will enjoy First Melancholy, Then The Night Stretch (New Dude) by musician Rick Cutler. The entire 18-song album is solo, so the listener gets a chance to hear each song executed beautifully from start to finish without interruption or interference. To be able to hear a musician play like this, adding subtle touches to his audio painting the way he does, is great. While I am not a pianist, I have always admired the sound of the piano and the way it’s played, and hearing this makes me wish I could play the instrument more than “by ear”, so to imagine his (or any musician’s) approach in songs like “Who Needs Words”, “Charlotte’s Roads Before Her”, or “Thank You (For McCoy Tyner)” is part of the listening experience.
While he is a musician that plays jazz, this isn’t just a jazz album, and I think most pianists will go into this album knowing and accepting this, since it’s about the power of the musician and the instrument chosen, not the style of music (s)he performs. It’s a stand-out album, and definitely worth picking up. With 18 songs (all Cutler originals), there’s enough to feast on for a long time.
(First Melancholy, Then The Night Stretch will not be released until January 2011. You can pre-order the MP3’s through Dig Station, CD’s to be made available at a later time.)