Pianist and composer Yiannis Karygiannis’ debut album "Retrospection", brings his background of classical and jazz together with his Mediterranean roots to deliver a richly layered and narrative contemporary work. With Karygiannis [GR] on piano, the Yiannis Karygiannis Trio also includes Alessio Bruno [IT] on double bass and Richie Struck [DE] on drums. As accomplished musicians actively playing throughout Europe, they bring their passions for diverse and challenging repertoires and genres to the trio. Instilling a depth and sensitivity into the dramatic melodies and interlocking rhythms, they create a uniquely enjoyable, immersive experience that highlights the trio members’ own skills as much as it reveals the intricacies of Karygiannis’ emotionally attuned and technically demanding compositions.
For Karygiannis, "Retrospection" is a reflection on love, longing, and immigration over several years. For audiences, the music is a beautiful reminder of universal human states: worry, desire, regret, and joy are presented in poignant, almost cinematic scenes. “Chasing Thoughts” and “Peaceful Warrior” feature rhythmic variations that drive the pieces energetically forward, successfully depicting both internal, emotional states and the external chaos and turbulence that can define our surrounding environments. “After the Rain” paints a lush landscape of calmness and peace, allowing for a moment of personal pleasure and contemplation.
Present in both this piece and in “Closer to East” are folkloric melodies which bring the Mediterranean front and center. In “Closer to East,” a longing for home is played out in the treatment of different genres. It is at once playful and painful; the joy of remembering and the pang of nostalgia. “1300 Miles” presents a more dramatic setting, using intense contrasts between lyrical movement and shifting time signatures to convey concepts of strong connection, upheaval, and deep longing. Haunting and dark, “Hideout of Remorse” is dramatic and lyrical, using contrasts in rhythm and tempo to mimic the ebb and flow of emotion; eventually the heaviness gives way to a shimmering piano epilogue alluding to lighter times to come.
"Retrospection" incorporates a wide range of inspirations and genres. Karygiannis’ own culture and influences merge with classic, jazz, and folkloric themes; metal and progressive rock elements are woven in with polyrhythms and metric modulations. Each carefully chosen component creates a personal collage; a sort of traveler’s account through intimate experience and honest emotion. With this debut album, Karygiannis has created meticulously layered landscapes of sound and rhythm delivered with a storyteller’s flair and a philosopher’s heart. The result is richly sensitive and technically accomplished; each piece on "Retrospection" explores different inner rhythms of the human psyche, creating a compelling story that rings of instantly recognizable challenges, trials, and triumphs.