Ab Ovo - Joep Beving

Ab Ovo by composer and pianist Joep Beving is a minimalistic solo piano piece, an ode to the beauty of the natural world. This poetic and contemplative piece set the stage for an emotional journey enhanced by its alternation of grace and intensity. Premiered in 2016, it is a brilliant example of minimalist composition inspired by Joep’s love of nature, as well as his passion for film and visual storytelling.

History and Release of Ab Ovo by Joep Beving

This touching solo piano piece was composed in Joep Beving’s studio in Amsterdam in early 2016. While working on a personal project, Joep was inspired to capture the organic and natural beauty of the world around him in his music through the combination of relative minimalististic composition and the rich sound of the piano. Ab Ovo was the first solo piece Joep wrote for the Piano, accompanied by cinematic touches and ethereal, dreamy texture.

The single of Ab Ovo debuted in June 2016, when the artist first announced its release on social media as a surprise to his fans. Shortly after, Joep also released an accompanying 10-minute-long “unplugged” version of the track. This version takes Ab Ovo to a completely different level, allowing its cinematic sounds and melodies to deepen even more thanks to a quite unique and powerful recording experience.

Simplified analysis of the composition from the point of view of music theory

Ab Ovo is written in a minimalist style, and its main riff is very simple in its harmonic structure. The piece is based on triadic harmony, and its root movements alternate between a minor third and a major third interval. This creates a sense of tonal clarity as the chords are always moving away from – and then returning to – the tonic. The melody follows the basic harmonic structure, and the main focus of the composition is on the repetitions and alterations of this melody. Joep Beving often uses leaps instead of stepwise motion, highlighting reflections and reversals of the melody.

The piece is set in a moderate 4/4 tempo, and is marked by its constant dynamic range, which helps to build the overarching and ever-growing emotion of the track. The classical piano piece has an incredibly loop-like and trance-inducing quality, with the single-note motif repeating throughout and an accompaniment figure which serves to keep a very steady and constant sense of momentum and progression.

Why "Ab Ovo" is so popular

The musicality of Ab Ovo is complemented by Joep Beving’s unique, creative and delicate playing. The balance between freedom and structure, sound and silence, beauty and power is one of the main aspects which make this composition so special. Furthermore, the use of multiple easily recognizable motifs, including a call-and-response pattern at the beginning and the end, provides the piece with a unique familiarity, as though it were carved out of a fond memory.

The success of Ab Ovo is testament to the emotive power of music. Its beauty allows listeners to forget the world around them and allows its calming melody to tap into their innermost emotions and thoughts. This is certainly a theme which Joep Beving has maintained among his other compositions.

Overall, Ab Ovo by Joep Beving is an emotionally powerful track, written in a minimalist style. Packed with beauty and emotion, the power of this track can be heard in its continuous movement of alternating grace and intensity. Its success further emphasizes the ability of music to evoke powerful emotions in a person.

Publication date: 19. 02. 2023