Piano-Heaven Award Winner:

Nocturnal Afternoon

Joseph A. Rojo

Global Pacific Records

  1994

 

 

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How are your detective skills? This is a rare CD, long Out of Print, but worth tracking down if you can spare the time and expense. I was fortunate enough to secure a new copy of this, but currently on Amazon, payments of around 95 dollars are required to land this masterpiece of a CD.

Released in 1994 on the Global Pacific label, "Nocturnal Afternoon" is Joseph A. Rojo's debut CD. Quite how this man failed to find more fame is unclear, because this is deserving of a wide audience and much acclaim. The ten-track CD features all-original compositions on piano, each of which, Rojo says in the linear notes, "express the various emotions of the heart." He goes on to say that his music also reflects the ambience of living in the North-West of America.

There are various moods on this CD, but each track undoubtedly falls under the New Age umbrella. It is a very easy CD to listen to, and each track is melodic and pleasing to the ear.

 

The CD's second cut, "Summer Storm" starts off quietly, but gradually increases in intensity as the storm takes hold. It features energetic piano playing from Rojo, who is equally at home with tranquil pieces as he is adept with high-tempo numbers.

 

A definite favourite is track 4, "Lost Reflection". The title suggests a melancholy piece, and the listener gets just that. I particularly like the way this track develops, as the tempo gradually increases and features sweeping movements on the piano. It as if the composer is coming out of the darkness and into the light.

 

"Search", the album's fifth track, is a fairly gentle piece to begin with. Like the previous piece, it develops into a fairly energetic number with a lovely melody.

 

Track 6 is a track that the listener will either love or hate. With a title "The Chase", the reader will not be surprised to learn this is a frantic but melodic piece, that is guaranteed to have the listener's toes and fingers tapping.

 

Another up-tempo piece is "Methodical Haywire", the album's seventh track. It follows the successful pattern of a catchy melody which becomes more frantic as the piece develops.

 

"e-minor Overflow" is a gentler number, the title of which will be significant to the musicians amongst the readers of this review.

 

Track 9, "Winter Breeze" opens with a gentle playing of notes at the high end of the register. The repeating of the melody with lower notes and louder dynamics signifies the increasing intensity of the breeze. This builds up into a quick-tempo part of the piece in which I always visualise a mini tornado!

 

The CD's closing track, "Nocturnal Afternoon" is very laid-back and relaxing, and brings the CD to a beautiful close. 

 

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this CD, and it is sure to become one of my favourites in my entire collection. I highly recommend it if you can track it down.

S.C.

 

 

 

 

 

Nocturnal Afternoon

Nocturnal Afternoon

Joseph A. Rojo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo

Joseph A. Rojo