BramDeLooze cover web

Album: Colour Talk
Label: Sdban Records
Vertrieb: Rough Trade Distribution
VÖ: 21. Februar 2020

Der 28-jährige belgische Pianist Bram De Looze kann bereits eine imposante Karriere vorweisen. An der New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York hat er bei Uri Caine, Marc Copeland und Reggie Workman studiert. Bereits mit 16 Jahren war er Mitglied im LABtrio. Zusammen mit Saxophonist Robin Verheyen und Drummer Joey Baron betreibt er ein eigenes Trio. Zahlreiche Preise und Auszeichnungen hat er bereits erhalten und wird nicht nur in Belgien als einer der kommenden Star-Pianisten gehandelt.


Bram De Looze nahm auch die Herausforderung als Solo-Pianist an und veröffentlicht nun sein neues Solo-Album „Colour Talk“. Darauf spielt er das von Star-Architekt Rafael Viñoly entworfene „Straight Strung Grand Piano“, einer Weiterentwicklung des Models von dem belgischen Piano-Bauer Chris Maene.


Als Wanderer zwischen den Welten Jazz, Klassik und zeitgenössische Musik präsentiert sich der junge Belgier auf „Colour Talk“. Befreit von den Zwängen und Einschränkungen der Genres spielt er entfesselt auf und fasziniert mit kurzen, ruhigen Miniaturen aber auch einer exzessiven 13-minütigen tour-de-force.

Bram De Looze’s solo career took off in an unexpected way with Piano e forte (2016), a project for which he approached historical instruments from a contemporary perspective. The switch to the Chris Maene Straight Strung Grand Piano for Switch The Stream (2018) indicated a renewed search for movement, evolution and introspection. The newest solo chapter, Colour Talk, continues this trajectory with another revolutionary piano model, designed by lauded architect Rafael Viñoly, and a continued attempt to renew from within.

As a member of Belgium’s LABtrio, which he co-founded at the age of 16, Bram De Looze (°1991) immediately impressed with his singular combination of technical skill and maturity. In a generation full of talent, De Looze became one of its brightest stars. A scholarship to study at the highly regarded New School For Jazz And Contemporary Music in New York became the start of a more international orientation. De Looze founded his Septych, an international gathering of talent that once again stressed his affinity for jazz, classical music and improvisation.

The past few years, De Looze could be frequently heard with kindred spirits like Stéphane Galland, Dre Hocevar and Antoine Pierre, but he also garnered acclaim with his exceptional trio with fellow Belgian Robin Verheyen and American rhythm painter Joey Baron, with whom he recorded MixMonk (2019), a tribute to a jazz icon that also contained some of De Looze’s own compositions. If anyone still needed confirmation of De Looze’s exceptional qualities, this one delivered the goods.

Besides all that, De Looze also started a solo adventure. On Piano e Forte (2016), he worked with a few historical instruments. On Switch The Stream, the Chris Maene Straight Strung Grand Piano, a revolutionary instrument that combined historical technique and material with state-of-the-art design and material, made its entrance. It allowed De Looze to dig deeper and come up with a new batch of compositions and improvisations that displayed his restlessness as a musician and composer, always on the lookout for renewal from within, for change and movement.

Enter Rafael Viñoly, internationally respected architect and piano collector. After having seen and heard the straight strung pianos by Maene, he felt the urge to come up with a new conception. In collaboration with Maene, he designed a brand new straight strung model, focusing not just on ergonomy, but also the visual aspect and physics involved. The result was a radically new concert grand, for which De Looze is the ambassador on Colour Talk.

The seeds that were planted on Switch The Stream are blossoming on Colour Talk . What you hear is a musician who has freed himself from stylistic constraints and limitations. While still rooted in jazz, classical music and free improvisation have found a new balance, a coexistence that enables the pianist to express himself with a new vigour. Switching between shorter pieces that feel like curious, unresolved puzzles and more extended explorations, Colour Talk, is once again an ode to (re)invention in the grey zone were the classical idiom and improvisatory urges meet, with the 13-minute tour-de-force of “Hypnosis” as one of several undisputed highlights.
If you asked De Looze about his current position as an artist, he would probably tell you that it’s all about forward movement and the need to keep evolving, about a trajectory as work-in-progress. However, if you consider Colour Talk as a freeze frame of where De Looze is at, it is hard not to consider it a highlight in a career that should have some more surprises in store.

Sdban Records is an independent record label, obsessed with grooves. Based in Ghent, Belgium.

It is home to such artists as Black Flower, STUFF., TaxiWars and De Beren Gieren.

1. Tu Vois/ 2. Obstacle/ 3. Dream Box/ 4. Colour Talk/ 5. Dual Puzzle/ 6. Hypnosis/ 7. Royal G/ 8. Circa

21.03.20 - Bremen, Sendesaal

The Chris Maene Straight Strung Grand Piano by Rafael Viñoly,

a unique instrument for the 21st century

Since Daniel Barenboim inaugurated his new straight strung grand piano, made by Chris Maene, in 2015, the Chris Maene Factory has developed several straight strung grand piano models.

One exciting project however was never made public, until now.

The renowned New York based architect Rafael Viñoly, famous for his extraordinary buildings such as 432 Park Avenue NY, The Cleveland Museum of Art or the Carrasco International Airport in Montevideo, is a passionate pianist and befriended with the greatest pianists all over the world.

After having seen and heard Barenboim’s straight strung grand piano, he felt the new concept of Chris Maene was the perfect basis for a new generation of grand pianos.

He started to design himself a straight strung grand piano in collaboration with Chris Maene and, contrary to most designers, Rafael Viñoly was involved in all further aspects of the development and production.

Therefore the instrument is not only unique in design and its concept but above all it appears to be a tremendous grand piano with a superb sound and a flawless action.

Now, convinced to have achieved their common goal, Rafael Viñoly and Chris Maene launch a revolutionary straight strung grand piano, ready to perform in the best concert halls and to be played by the best pianists worldwide.

Quote Rafael Viñoly


Quote Chris Maene

 ‘Rafael Vinoly is an exceptional architect with a clear vision and a profound passion for his creations. In designing this instrument the emphasis was not just the visual aspect but the piano as an entity, therefore he revisited the traditional set up of a grand piano.

The natural ergonomy of the keyboard and the physics involved in the straight strung concept were key. It was an enormous challenge to materialize his ideas and drawings and integrate them into the rules of traditional piano building, leading to an intense and fruitful collaboration. The result is astonishing: from Rafael Viñoly’s ideas arose a radically new concert grand, with unique looks and sounding exquisitely!

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