Said to sport both the melodic pop sensibilities of Yann Tiersen and Chilly Gonzales and the technical skill of Philip Glass and Erik Satie, Montreal-based pianist Jean-Michel Blais has revealed the details behind his debut record. Featuring eight original compositions, Il will arrive through Arts & Crafts later this spring.
From tinkering on his family's organ at age 9, Blais began writing original music and taking piano lessons at age 11. Training at the Trois-Rivières Music Conservatory as a classical pianist, the rigidity of formal schooling apparently didn't appeal to his gravitation towards improvisation. Settling in Montreal after living in Berlin and South America, a press release reveals that Il was recorded by Blais at home over two years, improvising every day. A taste of the pianist's skill can be heard by taking a listen to "Nostos," the record's first single, in the player below
Il is set to arrive on April 8 through Arts & Crafts and can be pre-ordered here. Scroll past the album's tracklist to hear "Nostos" in the player below.
1. Hasselblad 4 (improvisation)
4. Nostos (ft. BUFFLO)
5. Hasselblad 2 (improvisation)
8. Rondo majeur (trois mains)