Vetle Nærø – From Moments
Vetle Nærø‘s third album From Moments arrives on 7K! in April 2023. The 12-track record is his most personal work yet and an invitation to empty your mind and focus only on the present.
Norwegian pianist and composer Nærø grew up in the quiet coastal town of Ålesund. It is there that he first started studying piano with formal lessons from the age of nine. Over the years he honed his skills playing Chopin and Rachmaninoff and later discovered pioneering minimalists Philip Glass and Arvo Part while also starting a jazz trio side-project with friends. Eventually, playing the music of others grew unsatisfying. Nærø wanted to express his own feelings more directly, so he composed his first piece aged 14 and released his first album aged 18.
2018’s By Heart was a spontaneous project recorded in just one day. A second album, Introspection, followed in 2021 and was more composition based. Vetle now sees that record as a stepping stone, part of an ongoing learning and creative process that has ultimately led him to truly find his own voice, so what might be difficult for us to articulate in words, he can now express through his piano. “From Moments is my most honest, pure and instinctive work yet,” he says.
The album was written shortly after Vetle moved to Oslo. It’s a larger, busier city that had a profound effect on the artist. He felt freer to follow where the music took him. Because of that, the writing process was natural and spontaneous. Rather than overthinking things or striving for unnecessary complexity, Vetle tapped into a more genuine sense of expression. He allowed himself to be vulnerable and to capture what emerged.
The album is about being in the moment, in much the same way that a child lives only for the here and now and doesn’t fill their mind with worries about the future. “As a child, I could just do things without thinking what else I might do or what could have been more fun,” explains Vetle. “Life was just about sharing a connection with people around me. I was not yet affected by the mental constructs of adult life which take over as we grow up. We lose that freedom and become more confused than ever. But I think that we can feel that youthful connection to pureness and truth even as adults. We just have to stop and be solely in the present moment.”
The album opens with ‘Little Dreamer’ which was inspired after Nærø watched the movie Boyhood. It’s about maturing and growing up and is a beautiful track that swells from quiet and delicate to empowering and uplifting. ‘In Transit’ offers moments of reflection while ‘Childhood Moments’ is as innocent and uncomplicated as a track with that name suggests. A tension between heavy minor chords and more angelic keys defines ‘With Intention’ and ‘Berlin Berlin’, which was inspired by the bustle of the German city, features the atmospheric sound of passing traffic and a busy playground. Elsewhere, ‘In Between’ rouses the soul, ‘It Could Not Happen’ here is a mellifluous daydream and the rippling chords of ‘Momentary’ wash over and carry your woes away. ‘How You Watched The Moon’ conveys a sense of longing which caries on through ‘With The Wind’ before the suspensory ‘Duality’ and finality of ‘Inside Us’ send you off with hope in your heart.
From Moments is a milestone album from one of contemporary classical’s brightest new talents.