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Traffic Jam: Nils Frahm – ‘Basic Value’

Geez, a week has passed half way! I know because I’m rushing to catch up, that means I have to focus. And nothing keeps me focused like the music of Nils Frahm. So I’m going to share this track,”Basic Values“Originally in the album All Melody. The version here is the recording included in the live album Excursions with Nils Frahm. At just over 14 minutes long, the song is still too early.

Nils Frahm make music Brian Eno and Bill Evans would work if they somehow got together while a storm was hitting the set. It’s urgent and loud and tiring, but also patient and quiet and gentle. Fullness Frahm makes the piano music – the prefixes “post” and “anchor” are often used as labels – makes the burn cycle look relaxing. The hammers emerged like cams spinning overhead.

Seriously, I know it’s taking a while but be patient, bI’m afraid it will succeed when I hear it Nils Frahm. In “Basic Values” the rewards come sooner rather than later: around 02:41. But the song is literally just getting started, so buckle up.

I’ve said this before, but the main reason I use it to do any road trip is concerts. My town is not big enough to have many artists. So I Packed full of my car snacks and drive across stupidly large Texas to see artists perform in the state – or beyond, if need be. I was lucky enough to watch Nils Frahm play in Texas Theater in Dallas back in 2019. It was a revelation.

Watching Nils play the piano is like watching Michael Jordan at Slam Dunk Competition 1988or Marc Marquez at American Grand Prix 2015. We must be amazed at the proficiency we can have with a musical instrument or a basketball or a superbike. Nietzsche (read it as Porsche) is famous for saying, “Without music, life would be a mistake.” Nietzsche tends to make statements like this, which is read better like poetry and of course, aphorisms rather than lines in a treatise. But he’s right about the music; I didn’t really believe it until I saw Nils Frahm playing the piano.

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