(20 September 2009) All full length albums and the majority of the EPs released by Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter Charlotte Martin have been reviewed at Musical Discoveries. We have honored the artist's request not to review her five limited editions Rarities EPs. Fans will be delighted to hear that a sixth Rarities EP will be sold on her autumn 2009 piano trees - mad fast acoustic tour. Enthusiasts may be less happy to hear that this is the final EP of the series.
Our series of five individual interviews conducted between 2004 reveal the artist's musical formation, development and the run up to her highly successful album Stromata. Our next interview is planned to align with the release of her next studio album.
Entirely instrumental, Charlotte's latest release, the first from her new side project, differs from her previous recordings. Entitled Piano Trees (Test-Drive Songs (USA), CMP 0020, 2009), the album features 24 unedited, improvational piano pieces from 2005 to present. "I wrote it specifically to inspire other artists. We all have the capacity to create. We are all creative creatures," Charlotte explains.
Charlotte is taking a short break from recording her fourth full length studio album to promote Piano Trees and reconnect with fans this autumn. These intimate acoustic shows are intended to offer her fans a sneak peak of what is to come in 2010 and unplugged renditions from Charlotte's past studio releases including Stromata and On Your Shore. Piano Trees is being offered at Charlotte's four dates in Philadelphia, PA; Vienna, VA; Easton, MD and New York, NY. There is currently no online information on the album, although we expect the artist to make the album available online after the tour.
The tracks on Piano Trees flow almost seamlessly from one to the next. The tracks run from just over a minute to a little over three minutes; the CD has a running time of just under an hour. And while not all of the tracks feature the percussive style piano work Charlotte has become famous for, many of the tracks could certainly provide the foundation for a future vocal number while some will also sound familiar to the artist's fans. Other tracks are far gentler or improvisational in their own right. It won't take much imagination for the Charlotte Martin fan to envision further use of this material down the road.
The melodies within "Last Day I Saw You," "Tender Luna," "Before The War," "All Glowy" and the powerful and cinematic tune "Not Natural" sound abolutely great. The album's percussive tracks are also especially enjoyable. These include "Count From 1-10" and the standouts "Geronimo" and "Full Body Workout." "Colors of Numbers" and "Last Day I Saw You" are also two of the album's standout tracks with textures and melodies most reminscent of songs from the Veins EP.
The likely Stromata-era "Pulse," "Internalize This" and "Ascension Flight Button" ballads are very sweet. Quite a few of the tracks have a more of a brooding style; these include: "A Beautiful Spot Out In The Skyline," "Deleted Scenes," "God Made The Bees," "Honey and Vinegar," "Then Don't," "You Are And So Am I," "Forgotten Children," "In All The Right Places," "Landing Gear" and "Blind Spot."
Charlotte Martin's creativity and music output is exceeded by very few. Singer, songwriter, devoted wife and mother, the artist has found time to create yet another side project and tour the east coast to share her latest work with both new and long time fans. Charlotte Martin is renowned for the stunning piano playing that forms a foundation of her live performance. And now she has delivered an album of lovely short piano pieces to entice fans and draw them closer to her next full length album.