Sunnyside Records (SSC 1019)

Armen Donelian | Solo Piano

  1. Metropolitan Madness (Donelian)
  2. Nexus (Donelian)
  3. Kjellaug (Donelian)
  4. Harem Girl (Donelian)
  5. Invocation (Donelian)
  6. Contours Suite: Atoms in Motion, Prisms, Spirals, Mountains (Donelian)
  7. A Reverie (Evans)
  8. Stargazer (Donelian)
  9. I Dream Too Much (Kern)
  10. Morning Flower (Donelian)
  11. Hymn (Donelian)


Recorded 1984 at Seltzer Sound, New York, NY (LP/Reissued on CD, 1995)


Swing Jazz Journal (France, 1987)

His Armenian origin, his perfect pianistic technique, his deep understanding of European harmony from Bach to the present, his association with some of the biggest names in Jazz during the first ten years of his professional career - all these factors combine to place Armen DONELIAN very firmly among those rare musicians of true "fusion," in the real sense of that term (not the con-fusion of that pitiful and impoverished music, bastardized jazz-rock and disco...God rest its soul). This album could appear to be an exercise in style, but it is certainly not that. On the contrary, it delivers an impression of formidable unity, due to the clarity of the language and to an irreproachable taste which creates a climate of both power and peace. It is therefore an important record, for two reasons. First, because it's a masterpiece (no one is forced to believe me, and it's this fact which authorizes me to be so peremptory). Second, this album is an open door to evolutionary jazz - there's a new road opened to creative musicians, which will perhaps permit them to leave the beaten path where so many of their elders have been trapped for too long.

- Bernard Rabaud


Cadence (1987)

Donelian is a pianist worth listening to. Donelian's music sparkles with buoyant energy. It's good to see him finally get a domestic release.

- Robert J. Iannopollo


Christian Science Monitor (1987)

Donelian has a fine technique, and his compositions have a lot of substance.

- Amy Duncan


Keyboard (1987)

Donelian has a sure touch, good ideas, and a sense of humor.

- Bob Doerschuck


Cadence (1995)

Strong, but not overly virtuosic, technique, harmonic sensitivity and a pronounced melodic streak are the chief characteristics of his style. This recording also showcases a number of worthwhile compositions. "Metropolitan Madness" is a kind of '80's equivalent of Bud Powell's "Parisian Thoroughfare." "Stargazer" is an epic composition that deserves to become a standard. (Bill Evans would have liked this one.) "Contours Suite," in four movements, has a strong expressionist flavor. This CD is a straight reissue of the vinyl and is well worth checking out the second time around.

- Robert J. Iannopollo