Link to Living Tradition Homepage





DAN BROWN - Rewilding 

DAN BROWN - Rewilding 
Private Label DB2021 

Rewilding is a collection of seven instrumental tracks composed by pianist and keyboard player, Dan Brown, currently based in Glasgow. The musical flavour of the pieces echoes nuances of folk, jazz, chamber music and ambient idioms, but what lifts this from the usual realm of the ambient is the allegiance to ethnic forms and low key atmospherics, creating an intimacy that is almost tangible, and the brevity of the pieces which place them in the form of musical short stories that make their point and then depart without overstretching themselves or outstaying their welcome.

The music is both accessible and highly accomplished and the flavours of folk, jazz and semi classical forms are allowed to express themselves. The Tractors Of South Uist and Seven Spires and Watchers Of The Waves state their melodic cases briefly and succinctly, being both foreboding and suitably attractive, creating a welcoming optimistic vibe that is atmospherically rewarding. The pieces don’t adhere to traditional forms or rhythms in their construction, so more recognisable jig or reel rhythms aren’t present, rather they work from their own metronomic pulses which slide easily between Celtic, jazz and film music. In fact, the arena of film music would benefit from these pieces, especially short films, such is their succinctness and directional success. I could imagine material of this sort lighting up productions from BBC Alba or independent film makers and documentary producers. This is music to listen to carefully and muse over. Rewilding is a pleasantly surprising and rewarding collection of musical vignettes that point to a promising talent nearing fruition.

John O’Regan


This review appeared in Issue 141 of The Living Tradition magazine