Respite

“In Between”

(Blue Canoe)

On Respite, D. Mark Owen’s recent release for Blue Canoe, the pianist, keyboardist and composer creates cinematic soundscapes that draw inspiration from his vast and varied life experiences. One tune pulls memories of his working his way through college as a commercial fisherman, another evinces the anxiety of a working musician struggling to pay the bills, while yet another evokes the complex feelings of raising a child. But not all of Owen’s inspiration happens in his waking hours. At times, he relates in track notes to the album, he explores fertile creative territory while on the edge of sleep and consciousness, a state of being he conjures on the track “In Between,” included here. Owen’s romantic, crystalline piano waltzes dreamlike and mysterious, entering into a fantastic realm that unfolds and builds dramatically with lush, orchestral sounds adding to the ever-shifting ambience. “I’ve always been fascinated with dreams,” he writes in the album notes. “In fact, I’ve gotten a fair amount of compositional material by waking up and singing an idea into my phone, going back to sleep and then taking that recording to the studio and fleshing it out.”

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