Helen Jane Long (born 10 April 1974) is a British composer, musician and pianist, best known for various advertisement contracts, her work on several film projects in a variety of genres, and, most recently, her contemporary-classic piano albums, Embers (2010) (BLE) and Porcelain (Warner Music Group). In 2003, Long worked as music assistant to Howard Shore on the film score for The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Long composed the original music for the movie thrillers The Only Hotel and Surveillance 24/7.
AllMusic Review by James Manheim [-]
This disc, by British pianist and advertising-music composer Helen Jane Long, is said in the packaging material to "express the range of emotions I experienced" at various points in life. That may bring to mindDorothy Parker's old crack about an actress who could express a range of emotions from A to B, but, as with any other kind of music, this relaxing monochrome genre can be done well. Long's 13 compositions, all but one between three and five minutes long and all but four in natural minor keys, are accompanied by small string groups that vary from masses to solos (and occasional pizzicato) but generally do nothing more than provide simple backing to the relentlessly diatonic piano material. Each piece starts with the piano outlining some part of the tonic triad or scale and proceeds into simple arpeggios and scales that evolve in a leisurely way. Some are built on basic structural effects (Echo, track 3), while others are lightly descriptive (the subsequent Stars). Sure, you could use this as background music while sitting in a heated jacuzzi beneath those gray suburban skies, but you could also go back to the piano recordings released on the Windham Hill label in the 1980s, still very much in print, and hear this kind of crossover music done with some subtlety and chops -- your jacuzzi experience will actually be even more comfortable that way, because you'll be untroubled by the element of sheer bordeom this CD may bring.