Lynda Arnold & Daniel Berkman – Hammer Inventions
The debut album, “Hammer Inventions,” from composers and pianist extraordinaires, Lynda Arnold and Daniel Berkman, features 18 original instrument compositions consisting of acoustic piano orchestrations with electronic layered sampling, the latter of which were created entirely from sounds and noises generated from a wide variety of acoustic pianos, including several Yamaha pianos, which the duo endorses.
The skilled piano duo, who are also seasoned electronic music production artists, have delivered a series of varied, eclectic and captivating acoustic piano moments, replete with enchanting and engaging layered textures, that are all at once delicate and ethereal to grandiose. A fresh take on the instrument, “Hammer Inventions” defies the boundaries of the piano and fans of George Winston, Philip Glass, Steve Reich and Autechre are sure to find the tracks appealing and entrancing.
“Hammer Inventions” was born out of a spontaneous piano ‘four-hand’ improvisation session and quickly evolved into the far more ambitious production that it has become. After a dozen piano writing sessions, Arnold and Berkman recorded the compositions while concocting, creating and incorporating unique sounds and effects for the additional layered effects.
Layered piano sounds, samples and effects include ‘prepared piano’ (John Cage homage), plucked, bowed, toy, backwards, and detuned piano, as well as more effected and sampled sound expressions. Other sound experimentations include screws and bolts between and on the strings of Lynda’s prized 1984 Yamaha G2 5/8th Grand Piano to create drum sounds, plucking and bowing strings. A piano sample library by Sonic Couture adds more sustained, and string-like sounds, adding to and accentuating to the vast array of layers on the already intricate musical arrangements.
Acoustic piano recordings took place at Broken Radio Studios, San Francisco, on George Winston’s Yamaha C7 piano with engineer Matt Boudreau assisting, as well as Arnold’s prized 1984 Yamaha G2 5/8th Grand Piano.