Incarnation: Nativity Reflections[CD]
This is a astonishing collection of traditional holiday music which includes Jon's renditions of Gregorian chants, French, English, Bohemian, and German carols, as well as two original songs. Jon has done something different with each piece. That is, the listener isn't likely to say, "Oh, I've heard that before." This collection shows Mutchlers talent, creativity, originality, and chops. The music is refreshing and intriguing. Pianists will learn something. Although Jon would likely not be comfortable to be labeled a "new age" pianist, his style and performance will not only be embraced by those who enjoy that genre, but will challenge and stretch them in new directions as well. These improvisations will fill both the heart and the mind. What is clear is that his extensive background in classical and jazz comes to the forefront in these recordings. Most of what is here has been improvised "on the fly" with only minor preparation by the artist. At times the music sings with beautiful and freely modified melodies. At other times it is busy with an almost toccata-like feel to it. There are magnificent contrasts between big, fat chords that fill the room, and sections where the sweetest of piano colorings enter the soul. There are many magical moments in this album. It should be listened to not just during the holidays, but all year round.
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