One of the most significant catalysts of the twentieth century, the great piano stylist Harold Budd has written some of the most beautiful music, most of which is considered to be one of the highlights of contemporary music (be it ambient music or something else). With Eno or without, the music he composes is drifting, cosmic and deep, with intriguing undercurrents occuring below the surface.
Avalon Sutra/As Long As I Can Hold My Breath is a double CD and is full of evocative sounds of both electonic and accoustic pianos, accompanied by a gentle strings quartet as well as Jon Gibson's subtle soprano sax musings. Budd's spare but expressive style spans pieces starting from "žArabesque 3," which is one of the 4 duets with Jon Gibson (including Arabesque 2 , How Vacantly You Stare At Me and Arabesque 1) and "žIt's Steeper Near The Roses", "žL'Enfant Perdu", Chrysalis NU", where he is accompanied by a string quartet. Budd effortlessly combines both ambient music, impressionistic piano meditative run overs and strings into attractive and seductive blend that is uniquelly Harold Budd. The second CD is Akira Rabelais reworking the compositions in the same manner without hindering the meditative ambience of the complete record.
What is sad about Avalon Sutra is that it is Budd's swan song, but nevertheless he managed to produce an album of undeinable and unequaled beauty. It is an enchanting and seductive collection of compositions that leave the listeners soothed and it has that otherworldly feeling typical for Budd's previous work. This is contemporary music at it's best, call it ambient music, minimalism or something else.
Track Listing: 1. Arabesque 3
2. It's Steeper Near the Roses (For David Sylvian)
3. Enfant Perdu
4. Chrysalis Nu (To Barney's Memory)
5. Three Faces West (Billy Al Bengston's)
6. Arabesque 2
7. Little Heart
8. How Vacantly You Stare at Me
9. Walk in the Park With Nancy (In Memory)
10. Rue Casmir Delavigne (For Daniel Lentz)
14.As Long As I Can Hold My Breath
1.As Long As I Can Hold My Breath
Personnel: Avalon Sutra
Produced by Harold Budd
Jon Gibson:Soprano Sax, Bass Flute
String Quartet: James Sitterly, Peter Kent, John Acevedo, Marston Smith
As Long As I Can Hold My Breath
Produced By Harold Budd, David Sylvian and Akira Rabelais
Remixed by Akira Rabelais
I love jazz because it's sophisticated, international, atmospheric yet free, cool and warm.
I was first exposed to jazz through the sultry voice and flawless swing of my mother.
I met Mark Murphy, David Linx, Kurt Elling, and Youn Sun Nah.
The best show I ever attended was Youn Sun Nah in Paris.
The first jazz record I bought was Native Dancer by Wayne Shorter and Milton Nascimento
My advice to new listeners: open your mind and your ears, forget about structure, feel the textures.
Go see live music and keep buying CDs!