Published Apr 02, 2019Dutch composer Joep Beving began work on what would become a trilogy of albums in relative obscurity. As much to his surprise as everyone else's, his 2015 debut, Solipsism, got more than 80 million Spotify streams.
His leisurely, romantic take on new music composition always had the potential for mass appeal. Still, the world's streaming services are jammed with artists unable to draw the audience they deserve.
Deutsche Grammophon took notice and promptly signed Beving to a contract. Prehension followed in 2017, a second entry in the trilogy. That was followed by a performance piece for 300 lit drones called "Drone Ballet" at the 2018 Burning Man Festival.
Beving's short back story is remarkable, given the sophistication so clearly evident on this new double LP. Solipsism focused on the self and Prehension on the collective; Henosis — an ancient Greek term for oneness or unity — is a somewhat more traditional classical recording, but it is written and performed with such deep feeling that it is difficult not to admire.
Mostly, it is Beving on piano. The contrast between his Game of Thrones looks and the gentleness of his performance makes for an entertaining observation. But there is so much more going on here. His combination of solo piano, strings and electronics makes for a warm, rich listen. Cappella Amsterdam, Echo Collective and Maarten Vos are each credited with contributions.
"Regardless of our cultural differences I believe we have an innate understanding of what it means to be human," writes Beving in the new album's notes. "We have our goosebumps to show for it." (Deutsche Grammophon)