While “Escapement” featured piano and violin mainly, “Feathers” also introduces other instruments: harmonium, clavichord, harpsichord, spinet (and cello). But the piano and its percussive possibilities are still at the heart of the album.
Apart from playing her own (Blüthner) grand piano, she was given the possibility to select different instruments from the Russell/Mirrey Collection of keyboard instruments in Edinburgh.
“Recordings of unfamiliar sounds, which include brushing/plucking the strings and tapping/stroking the frames or soundboards, are combined with accidental ‘imperfect’ sounds that come from playing the instrument, such as pedal noise or the sound of harpsichord shutters opening and closing”.
When an artists starts “dismantling different pianos to understand how their mechanisms work and make sound”, this often indicates you’ll be listening to ‘difficult music’, but not in Poppy Ackroyd‘s case!
With her experience (studying contemporary classical piano, collaborating with the Hidden Orchestra, and creating film and theatre soundtracks), Poppy Ackroyd manages to create music that is ‘interesting’ as well as ‘accessible’, balancing her ‘sonic experiments’ with delicate, often light-hearted, melodies – thus creating her own personal (and recognisable) style.
Poppy Ackroyd – Roads