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Gwilym Simcock

Mercury-Shortlisted Pianist Gwilym Simcock Set To Release Second Solo Piano Album On ACT Records

Release Date: 26th April 2019

"Gwilym's an original. A creative genius" - Chick Corea

"Simcock has a feeling for the way harmony can create architecture as well as momentary colours - a rare gift" - The Daily Telegraph

Near And Now is Gwilym Simcock's second album for solo piano with ACT Records, and will be available on CD from April 26th. His ACT debut, the Mercury Prize-shortlisted Good Days At Schloss Elmau (2011), was hailed a success by critics and audiences alike, and established the Welsh-born pianist’s reputation internationally.

The majority of NEAR AND NOW was written on the road whilst Simcock toured as a member of Pat Metheny's Quartet. Simcock explains: "In the last six months or so, whilst away from home, I spent my spare time writing new music for a second solo album. I actually wrote much more, but quite a few of the pieces expanded." In the album, recorded at Simcock's home in Berlin, the pianist is aiming for an 'honest and personal sound,' for which he cites Keith Jarrett's home-recorded album The Melody At Night, With You as a model.

The instrument is a newly-acquired Steinway 'B' from around 1900, completely custom-rebuilt for Simcock by the Klangmanufaktur partnership in Hamburg. Each of the pieces on the album has another piano virtuoso as its dedicatee, including the first three tracks featuring the most compositional input dedicated to Billy Childs, the specific rhythmic focus and drive of the third track, dedicated to Brad Mehldau, and the transparently poetic fourth track You’re My You, deciated to his first jazz piano teacher and mentor in Manchester from the ages of 14-18: Les Chisnall.  

Track Listing:

Beautiful Is Our Moment for Billy Childs 15:39

01 Part I 3:29
02 Part II 6:35
03 Part III 5:35
04 Before The Elegant Hour for Brad Mehldau 8:53
05 You’re My You for Les Chisnell 2:36
06 Inveraray Air for Russell Ferrante 12:02

Many Worlds Away for Egberto Giamonti 19:38

07 Part I 3:33
08 Part II 11:40
09 Part III 4:25