Your Sunday Morning Jazz Album: Florian Hoefner – “Coldwater Stories”


Sunday morning is when the serenity comes down.  Sunday morning is the cocoon from the heavy exhaustion of too much Saturday night fun.  Sunday morning is when the city agrees to use its inside voice.  Sunday morning is when a hush settles in over the land.  It is a time for sitting still and listening to quiet music and silently praying the aspirin and coffee do something to stop your head from exploding.  Drama and stress are strictly forbidden on Sunday morning.  Your Sunday Morning Jazz Album is just for you, for times just like these.

Florian Hoefner knows how to work a melody.  His 2012 release Songs Without Words was one of the very best things to get released that year, and it was in no small part a result of the pianist’s vibrant display of melodicism.  Two releases since then did nothing to diminish that reputation.

This 2016 performance at the Bremen, Germany venue Sendesaal provides the opportunity to hear that melodic talent unfold in a solo setting.  Live and all by his lonesome, Hoefner has all the space he wants to explore and execute his melodic inventions, and it’s an opportunity he doesn’t waste for even a moment.  Right from the start, he switches things up.  “The Great Auk” delivers the melody more as a presence than a statement, whereas the melody of “Migration” is an amassing of glittering melodic fragments all packed in tight.  Tracks like “The Send” and “Never” show that Hoefner is equally capable of delivering the melody succinctly.  Catchy, too, when he wants to, as he does on “Green Gardens.”

The songs of Coldwater Stories were inspired by Hoefner’s new digs in Newfoundland, and perhaps no better piece reflects the tranquility of that place than the album finale “With the North Atlantic.”  It’s a lovely ending for a lovely album.

You need this album today, right now.

  • Artist-Title:  Florian Hoefner – Coldwater Stories
  • Personnel:  Florian Hoefner (piano).
  • Proper Use:  1) Gentle coaxing the aspirin to work harder at killing your hangover, 2) A soundtrack for the coffee & Irish cream soothing your weary soul, or 3) Watching your cat snore peacefully by your side and attempting to decipher the formula it uses to attain the massive serenity radiating from its sleeping form.

Released in 2017 on Origin Records.

Listen to more of the album on the artist’s Bandcamp page.

Music from St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.

Available at:  Bandcamp | Amazon