3

Hristo Vitchev Quartet: Familiar Fields

Chris Mosey By

Sign in to view read count
New Age jazz from a guitarist very much in the Pat Metheny tradition. Hristo Vitchev was born in Bulgaria but now lives—as do a great many other New Agers—in San Francisco. He wrote the music on this album some time ago but says the songs "were constantly searching for their own voice, their own identity, and their own place in this multi- dimensional sonic universe."

So he has now kindly given them a CD all of their own.

The songs are dreamily repetitive and while on occasion the "m" in that adjective needs to be changed an "r," there's still much of interest.

"The Mask Of Agamemnon," for example, is built on a hauntingly lyrical progression and features solid solos from the leader and pianist Weber Iago, who was born Weber Ribeiro Drummond in Rio de Janeiro but changed his name "in homage to the Roma people."

He wears a turban because he is currently a Sikh. A New Age publication, Mindful Magazine, recently hailed him as a "world famous pianist." This may be a trifle premature but he is very good.

The title song is in two parts. Iago states the theme with embellishments, underpinned by Dan Robbins' bass. Robbins then takes over briefly before Vitchev comes in with a delicately constructed solo that always reflects the spirit of the piece. The theme is restated against a dark chord progression before a fade into Part Two. Here the mood, largely handled by Iago, is gently nostalgic. Vitchev contributes a nicely understated solo towards close of play.

On the sleeve he describes how it felt to hear this and his other compositions take shape: "I felt as if I was walking through Familiar Fields yet everything I saw along the way I saw for the first time. As we played note after note, I realized that the music had finally found its resting place, its new life, filled with its own emotions, memories and many colorful characters..""

Track Listing: Ballad For The Fallen; Wounded By A Poison Arrow; The Prophet's Daughter; They Are No More; Familiar Fields Part 1; Familiar Fields Part 2; The Mask Of Agememnon; The Fifth Season; Willing To Live.

Personnel: Hristo Vitchev: guitar; Dan Robbins: bass; Weber Iago: piano; Mike Shannon: drums.

Title: Familiar Fields | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: First Orbit Sounds


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Study of Touch CD/LP/Track Review The Study of Touch
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 20, 2017
Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Gledalec CD/LP/Track Review Gledalec
by John Sharpe
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Flux Reflux CD/LP/Track Review Flux Reflux
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Christmas With Champian CD/LP/Track Review Christmas With Champian
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read "Around The Horn" CD/LP/Track Review Around The Horn
by Jeff Winbush
Published: April 16, 2017
Read "Don't Blink" CD/LP/Track Review Don't Blink
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 4, 2017
Read "LifeCycle" CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read "Whose Feet are These That are Walking" CD/LP/Track Review Whose Feet are These That are Walking
by Mike Jacobs
Published: October 9, 2017
Read "Hot Coffey in the D – Burnin at Morey Baker’s Showplace Lounge" CD/LP/Track Review Hot Coffey in the D – Burnin at Morey Baker’s...
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 4, 2017
Read "The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door" CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.