Album info



Album including Album cover Booklet (PDF)


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FLAC 48 $ 13.20
  • 1Bloom06:23
  • 2Before the Sun05:44
  • 3All at Once05:13
  • 4Right Where We Are05:45
  • 5Strange Love05:37
  • 6Shots04:04
  • 7Above All05:11
  • 8Lyra05:08
  • 9The Right Time03:53
  • Total Runtime46:58

Info for Bloom

Bloom, the ACT debut of pianist and composer Bill Laurance as leader, marks the transition from the smallest possible form of musical interaction to a large-scale, broadband format: Following the internationally acclaimed ACT release Where You Wish You Were in duo with multi-instrumentalist and Snarky Puppy bandmate Michael League, Laurance now teams up with Manchester-based 18-piece string orchestra The Untold Orchestra and creates a work of convincingly epic pro-portions. Combining Bill Laurance’s classical sensibilities with jazz, pop grooves, and powerful orchestral synchronicity, Bloom runs the gamut of emotions and moods.

“The starting point of my musical career is my classical piano training” says Laurance “and this album is certainly the most classic sounding one I've ever made.” The eponymous opening track of the album impressively demonstrates how organically and naturally, Laurance manages the balancing act between an orchestral sound, the accessibility and groove of pop music and the freedom of jazz: a series of dark, warm string chords introduces a sense of spaciousness and sonic depth.

Soon after, an intense rhythm develops, simultaneously light and tightly grooving. A crystalline piano melody develops over everything, leading into an imaginative, hypnotically intensifying improvisation. The earliest idea for Bloom was to create music of strong rhythmic intensity, achieved without drums or percussion and in a more classical setting. And after a period of experimenting with the dynamics of a string section to drive the pulse, Laurance got to work composing from his London studio base.

The Untold Orchestra proves to be the perfect partner in this endeavour: The ensemble, which was only founded in 2019, focuses on collaborations with musicians from a wide variety of genres. And on Bloom, it performs with the tightness and sonic density of modern pop music and the sensitivity and subtlety of classical musicians in equal measure. Together with this extraordinary ensemble and in arrangements by Joshua Poole, Bill Laurance's compositions evoke associations with Italian Baroque, Vivaldi, Shostakovic and Philip Glass.

Conceptually, Laurance says the record was largely inspired by his child’s capacity to imagine and create other worlds: “Every decision we act upon can be traced back to our capacity to imagine, and the limits of what we can achieve are restricted only by our ability to dream, as such. My child’s ability to pull back the curtain of reality and create a fantasy world ignited possibilities of my own, and with Bloom I seek to transport the listener to those places, inspired throughout by the power of the natural world and our ever-growing dependence on it.”

Featuring his widely lauded improvisational skills, Laurance perfects the balance of straddling virtuosity without becoming self-indulgent. His playing transcends mere technical mastery on the piano, instead weaving these techniques into something that captivates the listener, no matter what music they usually feel at home with. It respects the full instrumentation of his compositions, creating breathing space for each musician to be heard and understood. And so, Bloom ties in with its predecessor album Where You Wish You Were, albeit with completely different means: With its vocal and narrative quality, this music creates spaces and dream worlds in which listeners can lose themselves with joy.

Bill Laurance, piano, Fender Rhodes MK8, osmose expressive, Prophet 6
The Untold Orchestra
Rory Storm, conductor

Bill Laurance
Pianist, keyboardist and composer Bill Laurance’s music evokes a striking sense of time and place. As an original member of 5-time Grammy Award-winning group Snarky Puppy, Laurance has toured the world countless times, playing hundreds of concerts to tens of thousands of fans worldwide.

His brand new solo release HOPE comprises 3 parts exploring the aspiration of hope: trust, persistence and change. A track commissioned by the Internationally acclaimed dancer/choreographer and Artistic director Hope Boykin for the Hope Boykin Dance Company, it premiered as part of the Philadelphia Ballet's work Endure in February 2023.

“In a world of such uncertainty HOPE is an exploration into how and why we should remain hopeful.” (Bill Laurance)

The record follows a frenetic run of solo albums that include Affinity (2022), Live at the EFG London Jazz Festival (2021) and Cables (2019), as well as his most recent collaboration with Snarky Puppy bassist Michael League entitled Where You Wish You Were (2023). HOPE is a a natural continuation of Laurance’s lifelong infatuation with the piano. This began with a childhood love of ragtime, demonstrating an early determination by earning his keep over three summers at a Soho restaurant residency.

How the flint first sparked....

Attending the University of Leeds, he majored in classical composition, exploring jazz, funk and drum’n’bass in addition to classical music. Since then he has honed the melodic immediacy of this approach, along with his intense improvisational prowess, forging a distinctive personal style that embraces English classical, electronica and jazz-rock sensibilities, alongside gritty contemporary grooves.

In the early-noughties, a twenty-something Laurance was trying to make a living on the Leeds music scene, when an unremarkable but timely pick-up gig presented itself with a young Michael League in singer Michael Solomon Williams’ band. Gigs in the north of England forged a friendship with League, who happened to be looking for a new piano player, and League invited Laurance to the US to record the first Snarky Puppy album, The Only Constant, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Since then, Laurance has clocked up recordings and or performances with such renowned artists as David Crosby, Morcheeba, Salif Keita, Terence Blanchard, Susana Baca, Lalah Hathaway, Laura Mvula, Jacob Collier, Musiq Soul Child, Khalid Sansi, Chris Potter, Lionel Loueke, Carlos Malta, The Metropole Orchestra and the WDR Big Band. He has also worked extensively in the dance world with companies including Alvin Ailey, Ballet Rambert, Matthew Bourne's Adventures in Motion Pictures, Phoenix Dance, Northern Ballet Theatre and the English National Ballet. He has also composed music for a variety of different clients including Apple, Sky, Nokia and Hewlett Packard.

He is a champion of cutting-edge keyboard developments and is endorsed by: Moog, Mellotron, Sequential, Korg, Nord, Roli Seaboard, Yamaha, Roland, Arp Odyssey, Keyscape, Sound Brenner, Native Instruments and MXR. Alongside Laurance’s touring as a solo artist and with Snarky Puppy, Laurance is the Artist in residence at Morley College London. He is is a passionate educator and continues to give clinics at music institutions all over the world.

Booklet for Bloom

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