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Pirog, Anthony: Pocket Poem

I didn't know a thing about Anthony Pirog before writing this review. Everything - from who he was to what kind of music he makes - was completely alien to me. That might have been the reason why I was so pleasantly surprised with Pocket Poem. It's advertised as modern electric jazz and "guitar synthesis exploration", but Pirog's new album hides much more than that. There isn't much of jazzy noodling on Pocket Poem - the artist put more emphasis on electronic soundscapes, much like Mariusz Duda did on last year's surprise album Lockdown Spaces.

Tracks like "Dawn Cloud", "Honeymoon Room" and "Beecher" could work incredibly well as background music, blending the expressive but soft guitar work with new wave-ish keyboard backgrounds - not something you need to focus your full attention on, but also not quite pure ambient. And while these are fine in their own way, my favourites from Pocket Poem are the four tracks that stray away from the overall vibe of the album. "Sitting Under Stars" sounds exactly like you'd think by looking at the title - it's an acoustic guitar piece that gives me the warm, fuzzy feeling of sitting by the campfire with your best friends or significant other. "Adonna the Painter" mixes the overall vibe of the album with chamber - or in this case, ballroom music. I could imagine entering the main hall of an abandoned baroque palace with that track softly playing in the background. On the completely opposite side there are moments like "Mori Point" and "Untitled Atlas", in which Ches Smith goes wild on drums over something that I can only describe as 16-bit video game sound effects. I couldn't help but smile.

Overall, I would describe Pocket Poem as "lo-fi beats to study to" for experimental music fans. It's not something you put on during your morning walk - much rather in the background while studying for a difficult exam, or struggling against the overwhelming amount of paperwork. The weird, avant-garde nature of the record leaves me waiting for more. You win, Mr. Pirog - I am a fan.

Track listing:
1. Dog Daze
2. Dawn Cloud
3. Honeymoon Room
4. Sitting Under Stars
5. The Severing
6. Adonna the Painter
7. Danger Play
8. Pocket Poem
9. Mori Point
10. Part and Particle
11. Beecher
12. Spinal Fusion
13. Untitled Atlas
14. Deetjen

Added: March 7th 2021
Reviewer: Maciej Slowik
Related Link: Artists @ Bandcamp
Hits: 304
Language: english

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