Fiona Joy Hawkins â€“ Ice: Piano Slightly Chilled / 2007 Self / 10 Tracks / http://www.fionajoyhawkins.com /
Fiona Joy Hawkins is rapidly becoming a household name. One just needs to look at the hit count for her music video or â€œPenguin Whispererâ€, which has exceeded 11,000 plays on popular video service Youtube. â€œIced Rainâ€ starts off the disc, and it shows Hawkins as immediately bringing listeners into the fold. The atmospheric electronic sounds of the opening to â€œIced Rainâ€ allow in some disparate elements; hints of tribal and classical genres are present as well during the trackâ€™s first minute. The strongest facet to â€œIced Rainâ€ is the fact that Hawkins is able to imbue the track with a narrative component, despite the fact that the opening section of the track is instrumental.
â€œFrosted Viewâ€ is a much more slow and deliberate track, a song that shows that Hawkins can create an intricate story with a Spartan approach to arrangement. The inclusion of organic and inorganic elements to â€œFrosted Viewâ€ takes the composition to an entirely new level. The eclectic approach of Hawkins makes for one of the most interesting tracks on the entirety of â€œIce: Piano Slightly Chilledâ€, and shows again that Hawkins is skilled enough to tell a voluminous story without needing to include vocals. â€œAntarctic Wingsâ€ shows listeners another aspect of Hawkinsâ€™ skill; the track is able to capture the geographic sense of the trackâ€™s title as well as the coolness mentioned by the albumâ€™s title. There is a brief hint of current R&B influence in â€œLove In The Refrigeratorâ€, which for me gives Hawkins that added push. This push keeps individuals interested in what Hawkins commits to disc, as the shifting sounds put forth on â€œIceâ€ ensure that listeners will not be able to guess where Hawkins will go on subsequent tracks.
In much the same way as â€œLove In The Refrigeratorâ€, â€œWinter Coldâ€ changes things up considerably through the inclusion of a new genre of music â€“ this time, Hawkins places in a little bit of a Latin flair to the track. The inclusion of these differing styles of music does not only bring different sounds into the disc, but also is something to draw in a wider array of fans. After listeners have been snared by a play to a Latin or R&B style, the smart arrangements of Hawkins are enough to keep individuals interested throughout the rest of the disc. Give the disc a go if you like smartly-constructed, atmospheric types of music.
Top Tracks: White View, Snow Bird