Tori Amos: New Album & Song!

Tori Amos will release her fourteenth studio album, Unrepentant Geraldines, on May 13th. You can hear the album’s first single, “Trouble’s Lament,” below. Tori’s press release claims the new album marks a return to her original piano siren, chamber-pop sound and this song holds true to that promise. It’s a very exciting for us old school Tori Amos fans.

Unrepentant Geraldines Tracklist:

1. America
2. Trouble’s Lament
3. Wild Way
4. Wedding Day
5. Weatherman
6. 16 Shades of Blue
7. Maids of Elfen-mere
8. Promise
9. Giant’s Rolling Pin
10. Selkie
11. Unrepentant Geraldines
12. Oysters
13. Rose Dover
14. Invisible Boy

Pre-Order @ Amazon

Tori Amos Official Site

Joshua Bell & Jeremy Denk: French Impressions

Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell and pianist Jeremy Denk joined forces for French Impressions. This elegant and lovely collaboration features eleven violin and piano interpretations of works by Camille Saint-Saëns, César Franck and and Maurice Ravel. French Impressions will be released on January 10, 2012.

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Joshua Bell Official Site

Matt Haimovitz & Christopher O’Riley: Shuffle.Play.Listen

Muruch guest writer Brendan is back to discuss cellist Matt Haimovitz and pianist Christopher O’Riley’s new album, Shuffle.Play.Listen

Shuffle.Play.Listen is a collaboration between cellist Matt Haimovitz and pianist Christopher O’Riley and it sounds mighty fine to me.

Disc 1 features a new arrangement of Bernard Herrmann’s score for Vertigo mixed up with classical pieces by Piazolla, Janacek, Stravinsky and others. It works well enough and I appreciate the “Shuffle” concept, but I would have preferred that the Herrmann compositions had been grouped together. Shuffle should be an end user option.

I’m a much bigger fan of Disc 2 and was excited about pieces originally performed by Cocteau Twins and Radiohead, but was most impressed by covers of artists I’d previously been unfamiliar with – “Melody” (Blonde Redhead) and “A Lotus on Irish Streams” (John McLaughlin). Both tracks are particularly haunting and memorable.

Another track originally by John McLaughlin, “The Dance of Maya,” is performed with as much bombast as you can get from a cello and a piano. Fabulous.

Other artists whose songs are featured include Arcade Fire and A Perfect Circle. I’m not sure how much the album lives up to its claim to blur the boundaries between classical and pop, but it sure is fun to listen to and has already made it to my classical playlist.

Christopher O’Riley has many MP3s available for free download on his website, including piano versions of songs by Radiohead and Tori Amos.

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Julian Velard: Mr. Saturday Night

London-based singer-songwriter Julian Velard’s piano pop sophomore album, Mr. Saturday Night, will be released in the U.S. on November 1st. It may not be an artistic masterpiece, but it’s one of the catchier albums I’ve heard this year.

The influence of 1980’s Elton John and Billy Joel are evident in the ready-for-radio piano pop opener, “Me & My Mirror On A Saturday Night” – the mp3 of which you can download below.

“Love Again for the First Time” has shades of Gavin DeGraw and The Fray. The rest of the album alternates between solid, lackluster and somewhat annoying, but “Soundtrack of My Life” is waiting to be a hit pop single.

Julian Velard – Me & My Mirror On A Saturday Night (mp3 expired)*

*mp3 provided by & posted w/ permission of artist’s PR rep

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Julian Velard Official Site