147

Ramon Lopez: Eleven Drums Songs

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Ramon Lopez hails from Spain and resides in Paris, France where he teaches Indian music at the Paris Conservatory and performs in the “National Orchestra du Jazz”. On “Eleven Drums Songs” we are treated to a very comprehensive and entertaining display of technical virtuosity showcasing Lopez’ talents. No, not another egotistical display of chops by a self-absorbed drummer but a very musical endeavor which finds Lopez representing himself as a serious composer. Lopez utilizes an arsenal of percussion instruments in his stylistic synthesis of distinct cross-cultural inventions that are considerably engaging and magnetically appealing.

The opener, “Lucas” emphasizes Lopez’ shrewd utilization of timbre and nuance. “Lucas” is a feast for the ears. While the instruments are not identified anywhere on the CD insert, it is easy to discern that Lopez uses everything but the kitchen sink on this track. Augmented by a rapid-fire bass drum pedal, Lopez crafts a polyrhythmic burner with pinpoint precision and accuracy. Lopez whips his tom toms with articulate determination and the mellow pitch of his tom toms nicely counter-balance the high-end ethno-flute overtones. On “Drummers Remembered” Lopez develops complex rhythmic patterns displaying impeccable chops and cadence. Again, the compositions are quite musical and not one-dimensional. Lopez’ musical sense prevails. His conglomerate of percussion instruments registers complimentary tones that emphasize the big picture. In most instances these compositions preserve the musical spirit and reflect Lopez’ passionate attitude toward the underlying musical nature of “movement”. “Alicante’s Cowbell” is a joyous, upbeat composition, which covers Latin and African rhythms along with the very musical sounding cowbell taking on the roll as traffic cop. Here, Lopez goes for the jugular with amazing coordination and intriguing dialogue among his cavalcade of instruments. “Miracle of Jazz” features a pulsating bass drum, meticulous cymbal work and an instrument that sounds like a toy xylophone. Rich, lucid colors add depth to this pleasant tune, which re-affirms the worldly nature of this recording.

It would have been nice for Leo Records to list all the percussion instruments but that’s a minor complaint. Mr. Lopez’ compositions are entertaining, educational in content and strikingly unique. Lopez does a fine job of fusing genres and styles while dispelling those old rumors that drums are not musical instruments.

| Record Label: Leo Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read "Birdwatching" CD/LP/Track Review Birdwatching
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 5, 2016
Read "Brian Bromberg" CD/LP/Track Review Brian Bromberg
by Dave Wayne
Published: May 28, 2016
Read "Woodclock" CD/LP/Track Review Woodclock
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: July 2, 2016
Read "This Could Be That" CD/LP/Track Review This Could Be That
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: August 2, 2016
Read "The Way You Look Tonight" CD/LP/Track Review The Way You Look Tonight
by Edward Blanco
Published: June 10, 2016
Read "Burning Ghosts" CD/LP/Track Review Burning Ghosts
by Troy Collins
Published: July 21, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!