Contact for Piano Solo (Album) by Guy Van Nueten.

Contact by Guy Van Nueten originated from the feeling of being abandoned, such as a person who treks through a barren desert following a great disaster and asks himself if there’s any point in carrying on when every day brings just more of the same – still more desert. I suspect that each of us has such a desert within himself, but that it depends on circumstances whether or not we choose to make the journey through it.

Contact lays out a path that we can share. This music seems especially romantic to me, in the sense that the sounds have much to say about loneliness. There are moments where this album emphasises its own seriousness, then immediately afterwards invites us to dance. Contact sticks out a hand, sometimes two, mostly to show the internal process of the composer – firstly the lack of fire and the abandoned longing for this, followed by the bewilderment that there is something that is still smouldering and that can be fanned into a blazing forest fire to burn away all the pain of desolation. For this reason it is also moving music – because it wants the recognition of the listener, wants us to feel our own desolation while the piano explores further depths and heights. At times a composition is almost carelessly abandoned and another one begun. Whoever looks closely at feelings and is honest with himself and the world is always a little cruel.

But finally there is an end to that desert – he sees an oasis and also a beautiful hotel. Upon entering, he sees no-one, not even at the desk, but the reigning play of light and colour is of an otherworldly power. Maybe no other people are needed here and the beauty that prevails is enough. Then sounds of music arise and some people move across to the immense hall where a wing has been set up, behind which a man is sitting, his fingers moving across the keyboard. And only one thing is real: after desolation comes comfort. That person is you and that person is me. And that music is called Contact, directly from the soul of Van Nueten.

Jeroen Olyslaegers, June 2018