The Piano Guys [TrackList follows] – Sony Masterworks 88725 47676 2 ****:
These five men started making music videos together for YouTube just for the fun of it. Soon their hobby had turned into a worldwide phenomenon and got millions of viewers, and they end up getting signed to Sony Masterworks, believe it or not. They got their name from a piano store in St. George, Utah, and among the five of them only two are really musicians! – one a New Age pianist and the other a cellist. (That town was heavily doused in radioactivity from the nearby atomic tests; perhaps that explains this meshuga project.) The owner of the store makes three—he handled some of the group’s promotion. The videographer member creates the group’s amazing videos, and the fifth “guy” is head of the group’s studio operations, percussion and vocal texturing, and helps in co-writing and arranging.
The sounds are so eclectic it is dizzying. They cover classical, rock, pop, film scores, you name it. There seems to be more spotlight on innovative cello parts than the piano. There are also some vocals. One of their goals is to broaden the audience for classical music while inspiring young musicians. If you haven’t seen any of their YouTube videos, do it now. My favorite so far goes with the track here titled “Cello Wars.” It features Darth Vader playing the accordion—now where else could you possible see that?
TrackList:01. Titanium / Pavane 02. Peponi (Paradise) 03. Code Name Vivaldi 04. Beethoven’s 5 Secrets 05. Over the Rainbow/Simple Gifts 06. Cello Wars 07. Arwen’s Vigil 08. Moonlight 09. A Thousand Years 10. Michael Meets Mozart 11. The Cello Song 12. Rolling in the Deep
13. What Makes You Beautiful