The new single by neoclassical composer Benjamin Fitzgerald is an intense and mesmerising four and half minute long patchwork of different emotions and musical influences, recorded with a lineup of artists from the Newcastle University folk, contemporary and jazz degrees, including fiddler Merle Harbron and harpist Ada Francis.
The aim of the composition is to guide the listener towards that safe space we all need to find refuge in during these troubled times, an inner haven from every form of negativity, violence or harassment. The track introduces the main theme from the first moment before a softer passage leads to a delicate climax, culminating in the return to the theme in an even more energetic way. The piece ends in a contemplative and softer mood, but not before the final piano notes provide a link to the very start of the composition
Sinuously flowing, smoothly syncopating between the different phases and atmospheres of a brief but intense track, The Cottage is successful in weaving traditional music with contemporary classical music and jazz as his complexity goes far beyond every expectation. Careful ears will surely notice something new at every listen, such as the cyclic and harmonious dissonances and the stunning harp progression, all details that contribute to the modelling of a new and idiosyncratic sound.
The overall result is a hypnotic composition that envelopes the listener in positive and surrealistic soundscapes, hopefully the starting point for more material of this sort to come.Michele Mele
Released on 26 November 2020, produced by Josh Ingledew at Blank Studios, Newcastle-upon-Tyne
1. The Cottage