- 20 Nov 20
Classically trained on piano and trombone, BK Pepper’s musical projects include composing for film and theatre as well as touring with both orchestras and rock bands.
Rising Irish contemporary composer BK Pepper has found a niche gap in the market for his powerful yet subtle sound, blending neo-classical electronics with piano and strings on his new album Territories.
His modern talents are infused throughout Territories, which often uses a quieter tempo to build up a beautiful momentum until he chooses the perfect moment to unleash strings and piano on the listener. Opening with the initially slow-moving but progressively urgent ‘Alerts’, the first song is one of the album’s most effective. Adding drama, energy and power at will, second track ‘tilt’ invokes sharper violins and brings added background instruments to the fore.
The album’s theme incorporates the increasing visibility of borders in recent years, with migration, trade disputes, wars over resources, climate disasters and now a global pandemic reshaping how territories are perceived, defined and enforced. Hypnotic lead single ‘Colours’ is simultaneously comforting and poignant, creating a story without any words needed. Simple piano melodies are one of the most vital elements of the album, with Pepper setting a digestible pace throughout.
Song titles such as ‘Bridges’, ‘Nations’ and ‘Islands’ illustrate the way in which Territories speaks to the fear of the Other and the dangers of shutting out our fellow human beings. ‘Need To Know’ offers an uplifting conclusion to the work, and creates excitement for Pepper’s future.
There is a compassion in Pepper’s music that emanates from each note, with even the more elaborate electronic sounds and string additions never threatening to overpower the overall track. Layer upon layer of atmosphere bleeds across this stunning album, but Pepper allows the audience to insert their own emotions into each song. The impact of the composer’s knack for understanding the music in cinema creates a collection of tracks that would elevate any film into another realm when used at the right moment.
Listen to: Tilt
BK Pepper’s debut album Territories is out now.