How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
The mysterious and beautiful art-form of Spanish Flamenco music is re-interpreted in composer/percussionist Nacho Arimany's, Silence-Light, a unique listening experience that features the Madrilenian and his World-Flamenco Septet. The genre has been covered before within various idioms, and while the sounds are familiar (precision handclapping and foot-stamping) there is more than what is heard as Arimany states that "The music isn't an esthetic end, but rather a channel to generate movement or communication."
This is articulated by Arimany's inspired performance and direction of exceptional musicians representing the fundamental links of Flamenco music including guitar, vocals (featuring Antonio Campos), and dancing (performed by Concha Jareno). Add well-crafted contributions by bassist Massimo Biocalti, pianist Pablo Suarez, and rising jazz/world playersguitarist Lionel Loueke, and saxophonist Javier Vercherand the result is a mesmerizing project.
The music indulges many sounds and influences including spirituality, folk, dance, and poetic forms that smoothly flow between each other. This is most evident on larger pieces like the commencement call of "Origen" which contains the sounds of percussion, running/splashing water, woodwind instruments, and chant-like voice, all moving into different compositional sections. Recorded live, the recording feels episodic with sections described by instrumental, dance, or vocal movements similar to a live theatrical work.
Each member of the septet provides excellent performances. Arimany's passion is heard in his playing, painting each piece with ethnic drum-set (which includes exotic percussion) as well as guitar and voice. Discriminating lines are also drawn by Loueke's acoustic or synthesized guitar and West African vocals on "3 Angels" mixed with Arimany's percussion to create a peculiar new world sound.
Along with Arimany, the intricate workings of Biocalti's bass and Suarez's piano provide more than just a jazz trio foundation but also acts as a conduit between the various changes. Saxophonist Javier Vercher makes his presence felt by adding contour texture and mood in depending upon the moodsometimes primitive ("Below The Sea Level") or jazz-oriented ("Soleá Del Viento"). The spirits of dance and song are always present and Concha Jareno's footwork is an added percussion instrument on "Meeting Point," while Antonio Campos' remarkable vocals are playful and romantic or haunting on "One Old Song."
As the recording began, it ends in mystery and expectation with "Kyrie-Luz," as Arimany plays an affecting solo piano. Jazz and flamenco may have crossed paths before but Nacho Arimany brings a fresh approach with ideas that have yet to be discovered.
Track Listing: Origen; Homenaje A Morente; Below The Sea Level; One Old Song; Silence;Meeting Point; 3 Angels; Sole� Del Viento; Kyrie-Luz.
Personnel: Nacho Arimany: ethnic drum-set, spanish guitar, piano (9), vocals; Javier Vercher: saxophones; Lionel Loueke: guitar, vocals; Pablo Suarez: piano; Antonio Campos: flamenco singer; Massimo Biocalti: bass; Concha Jare�o: flamenco dancer.