reviews

 

 

 

REINIER VAN HOUDT AT SPECTRUM, New York Times, USA

     

"..Reinier van Houdt presented three works that stretched the piano's expressive range with external interventions..

 it was caleidoscopic and rudely funny, sonorous and eerie, or delicate and deliberate.. showcases for compositional

 ingenuity and interpretive sensibility alike..Stripped back to manual agility and the piano's intrinsic qualities his

 performance was no less imposing..The playing was brilliant, the instrument outstanding, and I've never heard a

 better mix of piano, electronics and amplification than during van Houdt's program.."

 

THREE DAYS OF ADVENTUROUS PIANO, Weserkurier, Germany

  

"..Reinier van Houdt's performance was radical, extreme and without compromise. One of the most impressive examples

 I have witnessed of maximally mesmerising an audience with ever more reduced materials.." 

 

A NOMADIC PERFORMANCE, Algemeen Dagblad, the Netherlands

  

"..a rollercoaster of a program, a wild ride through metropolis with the audience in the backseat. For hours van Houdt

 played the keys, touched the strings and poured himself and the audience drinks. This was somehow like a roadmovie.."

 

A HARD HAMMERED POUNDING, Los Angeles STAGE & CINEMA, USA

       

"..he lets the audience let go of preconceptions ...he is a pleasure to watch and hear. As much a curiosity as his experimental

 leanings, he does not hide behind showmanship. He enters the stage, pounds the hell out of his piano in a focused torrent,

 and then modestly leaves the stage.. Despite a deceptively lanky frame, his technique is plucky, precision driven, and surprisingly

 powerful. His sound often thrillingly and unexpectedly swarms the audience, amplifying hammered keys through sheer force..

 This music demanded that he imbue each and every note with bravado. He undertook this artful task painstakingly.."   

  

VISIONARY MUSIC FOR THE PIANO, New York Classical Review, USA

    

"..After witnessing van Houdt play Walter Marchetti's Per La Mano Sinistra, the United States premiere no less - it was clear

 that this pianist brought unique qualities to the stage... Marchetti's piece is a singular composition, beautifully played by the

 pianist who is one of the composer's precious few advocates.."

 

REINIER VAN HOUDT PERFORMS IN LOS ANGELES, Sequenza 21, USA

   

"Reinier van Houdt's unexpected input succeeded in asking the question about what constitutes an act of composing..his intense

 concentration and gentle touch kept everyone engaged throughout..unwavering concentration and impressive masterful playing.."

 

HERCULES AT THE KEYBOARD, Algemeen Dagblad, Netherlands

   

"..Reinier van Houdt, one of the most unconventional pianists in Holland, is in full command of this score, physically and technically,

 but is also able to give this music wings; this makes him an extraordinary performer...history was written here; a heroic act of this

 pianist, who had to travel through an unimaginable mass of notes, dazzling and complex, with grandiose entanglements of polytonal

 chordmasses and extreme polyphony.." (Haagse Courant) 

 

REINIER VAN HOUDT AT MELTDOWN, Freq-Zine, UK

   

"..Out onto the stage strides Reinier van Houdt, a curious and beguiling mixture of diffident and confident. Pale, thin and barefoot,..

 he surfes a volcanic music from peak to trough,  in a dizzying display of skill. From furious passages of speed, full of flurries of

 notes almost too complex to decipher, to strange, tense and dramatic pauses , van Houdt is demonstrating everything he has to

 give on the instrument to which he's very obviously given his entire life. And it's a joy to hear...van Houdt rippling the notes in a

 torrent of sound which brings to mind Evan Parker in full-on circular breathing mode....after an astounding display of skill and

 commitment, Van Houdt takes a brief round of applause... The fact that his mission is to (re)introduce such important and neglected

 work back into the musical body politic cannot be praised highly enough.."

 

ALLMUSIC review, USA

   

"..perhaps the most uncategorizable album in Current 93's catalogue, and that's saying something.. it's driven by Van Houdt's

 repetitive, hypnotic series of nearly classical changes,.. this music is an acquired taste: it's arcane, transgressive, and sometimes

 excessive. But it's also simultaneously holistic, maddening, erotic, bleak, bright, and most of all, visionary.."

 

A PHENOMENON, Rheinische Post, Germany

    

"..the German premiere of Sorabji turned into a dazzling and shocking experience. Unpretentious in his appearance, to the enormous

 surprise of the audience this thin figure showed himself to be an absolute piano-titan, capable of reviving the Sorabji-glow...Reinier

 van Houdt played transparently and clear, even in the craziest passages...nothing was muddied or glued together: a phenomenon..."

 

A MARATHON OF OUTSIDERS, Volkskrant, the Netherlands

   

".. the pianist didn't stop at ten fingers and he regularly pressed down a key with his nose. However the mesmerizing way in which he

  embodied the schizoid dynamics of this music kept laughter at a safe distance.." (Volkskrant)

 

PLAYING IN THE SCORCHING CLUB OF PIANISM, Globe & Mail, Canada

   

"The intrepid Reinier van Houdt tackled Sorabji's six-hour Symphony..He maintained a balance between calm and storm, lyricism and

 high drama and he entered into a fugue or passacaglia as naturally as he might enter his own living room. Van Houdt played the

 symphony with the endurance of a freestyle rock-climber. Besides the physical struggle, he had a mental struggle as well, trying to

 find an authentic voice for Sorabji. The composer has no performance tradition. It is still a new frontier for pianists, and van Houdt

 is one of the first pioneers. He made a splendid effort.."

  

ON GIACINTO SCELSI, MusicWorks, Canada

   

"..I've never heard these works played with more confidence and clarity. Reinier van Houdt possesses a prodigious technique, more

 than equal to the demands placed upon it. More importantly, he has the insight to illuminate the rightness of these difficult works.

 Works that have proved intimidating to many lesser talents.."

  

CURRENT 93: I AM THE LAST, Touching Extremes, Italy

   

"..Make no mistake: this album is grand.. almost a desert island disc...perpetually growing tensions reach near-unbearable levels when

 Tibet explodes in his most theatrically virulent prophetical threats: you can literally sense the foam at the corners of his mouth as he

 conjures up images of sitting serpents, pyramid eyes, obscure geometries and ghosts - either of Gary Glitter, or screaming on the phone..

 Van Houdt's piano is the main axis: an omnipresent elegiac accompaniment suitable to some kind of silent movie from ancient eras...

 imbued with romantic classicism and, in a way, minimal logicality..a touch of fineness that not many will notice..."

 

MAYHEM AT THE MUSIC GALLERY, Toronto Star, Canada

   

"He was able to pull off any number of technical highwire acts and his technique highlights a remarkable even-ness of tone and touch."

 

CURRENT 93 AN ENIGMA, Mediasnobs, UK

    

"..Perhaps one of the most cohesive and completely gelled albums I've heard in recent times, I Am the Last of the Field that Fell isn't

 just one of the best albums of 2014, but may quite possibly be Current 93's crowning achievement within a monolithic catalogue of

 experimental classics..(it is) primarily piano-composed and truly stunning...It doesn't just border the line of beauty and horror; it

 crosses the line many times, while dancing back and forth. Yet, it is a majestically stable listen. Despite all its terrorising tensions and

 lax heavenliness, it maintains a careful cohesion that's hard to imagine.  Current 93 has redefined its sound once more, and delivers a

 deep, satisfying, minimalistic but complex musical experience. This one doesn't beg; it demands to be heard."