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Satie: Slow Music - Gymnopédies; Gnossiennes; Petite Ouverture a Danser; Pieces Froides / Jeroen van Veen, piano

Album Summary

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne no 1
>Satie, Erik : Gymnopédie 2
>Satie, Erik : Gymnopedies (3) for Piano
>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne 1
>Satie, Erik : Gnossiennes (6) for Piano
>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne 3
>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 4
>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 5
>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 6
>Satie, Erik : Petite ouverture à danser, for piano
>Satie, Erik : Pièces froides (Cold Pieces), pieces (6) for piano
Performer Composer

Notes & Reviews:

“Open your head”, “light as an egg” and “from the top of your back teeth”: such phrases are only to be found in the scores of the eccentric Erik Satie, a composer born into a generation where ‘only more could be more’ – the post-Wagnerian age of richly furnished, intense music full of emotional layering. Expelled from the Paris Conservatoire for being its “laziest student”, Satie rebelled strongly against the musical climate in which he grew up, instead choosing to adopt a voice that did away with what he considered to be pretentious behaviour and which instead drew on irony through the use of free association, subtle dissonances and unexpected asides. Such a stance – that music requires no extra layering, no showing-off, in order to touch its audience – ultimately resulted in ethereal-sounding compositions that are slow and solemn by nature. Pianist Jeroen van Veen has therefore taken it upon himself to exploit the concept of time in relation to the composer’s works, stretching the durations of some of the Frenchman’s most frequently performed pieces – including the Gymnopédies (a made-up word, incidentally) – to the max, and then going the extra mile: from slower to slowest, giving each note and each chord the chance to be absorbed fully. The result is that less actually becomes more; that duration is no longer of relevance, because the presence of sound is enough. Such music forces us to think outside the box, and “maybe this is exactly what makes Satie’s works timeless,” says van Veen, who presents the listener with a unique take on one of music history’s most fascinating characters. Other information: * Recording: January 2013, Studio 1, Van Veen Productions, Culemborg, The Netherlands.

American Record Guide, March/April 2015
Part of me really likes the approach. Once you are in the groove and listening to this, it all seems to work well, especially on first hearing. Yet another part of me says I will return to it seldom. I like all of the works here, and they are performed with more detail to voicing and tonal gradation than I would have thought possible. I am certain that Satie would have approved; and if this appeals to you, it is a thoughtful, well-recorded performance.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Studio 1, Van Veen Productions, Culemborg, The Netherla (01/2013).



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Works Details

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne no 1
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1888

>Satie, Erik : Gymnopédie 2
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1888

>Satie, Erik : Gymnopédies (3) for Piano
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1888

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne 1
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1890

>Satie, Erik : Gnossiennes (6) for Piano
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1890

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne 3
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1890

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 4
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 51 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1891

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 5
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 2 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1889

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne for piano no 6
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 48 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1897

>Satie, Erik : Petite ouverture à danser, for piano
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1900

>Satie, Erik : Pièces froides (Cold Pieces), pieces (6) for piano
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 13 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1897

>Satie, Erik : Gnossienne no 1
  • Performer: Jeroen van Veen (Piano)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1888