Solo piano outings often serve as a baring of the artist's soul. Montreal-based pianist Francois Bourassa does just that on his tenth album, L'impact du Silence. Influenced by the piano artistry of Chick Corea, Brad Mehldau and Bill Evans, Bourassa has concentrated on small ensemble worktrios and quartetson his previous recordings. Bringing his classical music influences into play, he transforms the blank canvas of silence into a work of introspection, notes chosen with a solemn deliberation which allows the open spaces on his canvas to show through and play a major role in the shaping of the soundscapes he creates.
The mood of the music has a cinematic quality. All compositions are credited to Bourassa, but there is certainly a high degree of improvisation involved. Sad stories emerge. Glimmers of life-affirming joy shine through the grey clouds.
As much an exploration as it is a soul-baring, the journey is taken patiently. "Remous Part 1" takes the inward search away from the contemplative into a vivacious strut, while "Arch 65" has an aggressive, even ominous, vibe, and "KVQ" sounds like a drifting-on-a-cloud dream.
"Triadique" is a beautiful abstraction and "Gaspar," at six minutes in length the longest tune on this set of succinct composition, sounds like a soundtrack to a small child alone in her room, fascinated by the sound of a music box.
The sounds end with the brief "Epilogue," a beautiful eighty seconds that stops abruptly, like a quick opening of a door to a bright sunrise.
Small Head; Blues Masqué; Triadique; Interlude Y; Gaspard; Interlude X; Remous Part 1; Interlude Z;
Andante; Arch 65; La Buissonne; KVQ; Musique pour Film; Epilogue.