Music For Writers: Tim Hecker

Dropped Pianos by Tim Hecker is, quite simply, a beautiful record to behold.

Filled with a haunted beauty. Isolated droplets of crystalline beauty. It is a beauty fraught with a hammer string’s tension. Delving into hyperbole, or fancy adjectives, would not do the album justice.

Hecker is a Los Angeles based musician (by way of Chile and Montreal, Canada) and he has over a dozen critically acclaimed recordings over the last decade plus to his credit. He is notably virtuosic on keys, peerless with arrangements, and 2011’s Dropped Pianos is a stirring example of that acumen.

This record is brief and minimalistic. The nine tracks weigh in at a spare thirty-five minutes in length (as a note, Dropped Pianos has a companion record, Ravedeath 1972). The songs are titled chronologically as a sequence of sketches and tend to come across at times as parts, thoughts, and bits of something else. That sense of incompletion proves worthy fuel for imagination. One can delve anywhere into Hecker’s song sketchbook and wander a few steps forward from the fade; you can just as easily reel back, anticipating what may have built to the lovely crescendo.

Sometimes simple beauty is what a writer and artist needs to advance. We all thrill in an awe inspiring view into a lush place. Toward that purpose, Tim Hecker’s record is a necessary listen.

For a copy of Tim Hecker’s record, Dropped Pianos check out your local library.

On Hecker’s Bandcamp page, you can stream all of the tracks to this album.