Irdorath – Dreamcatcher (2015) Review



The last review I’m going to upload now is actually Irdorath‘s second album, Dreamcatcher, released in 2015. Why do I post this one last then and not second ?? Well, I want to end this introduction of Irdorath’s music with a bang and this, for me personally, is their best album, even though I am now comparing two great records with an A+ album. Dreamcatcher was released in 2015, after Piotr Marchenko (guitar, twelve string bouzouki), Anastacia Filipenko (violin, cello), and Alexandra Aleksiuk (Violin and cello) joined Irdorath in 2014. The record is the logical bridge between the medieval dance folk Irdorath played on Ad Astra and the fantasy power folk they played on their last album Wild. It is more easily accessible then Wild, an album that might be a bit too ‘powerful’ for some of our readers. It also ticks about every box you could tick for me personally, making Dreamcatcher one of the best records I heard in a loooong time, but let’s stop chatting about it, let’s just dive into Irdorath’s musical world one more time.
Where the CD Wild starts as a full-force hurricane that hits you without warning, the title song on Dreamcatcher starts much more gently. A lovely alternative pop-folk song. Cool mouth harp, percussion with a smooth groove, and a beautiful bouzouki riff building up to a very impressive instrumental start of the song. Lovely orchestra arrangements take you into this nice and catchy pop-folk ballad. A song that again proves that Irdorath knows how to write a good song. They are all catchy, well arranged, and just dotted with all the interesting twists, breaks, and influences that make good music truly stunning.

As Bas is slightly faster in rhythm, and again an interesting alternative acoustic folk-pop/rock song. I know I keep coming up with these weird descriptions in all the Irdorath reviews, but that is actually a compliment towards the band. They have such a unique own style. And it all blends together so naturally. A pagan folk hurdy-gurdy together with a slidgeridoo and a slightly Spanish sounding guitar to start the song? Sure, no problem. A bit of melodic rap to continue with? Yes, why not. A bit of an Arabic feel combined with a slidgeridoo? In the Irdorath world, sure, and the result is catchy as hell.



Tam Nikto is the first of two beautiful ballads, showcasing Nadezhda’s powerful voice for the first time but also Anastacia on cello. I love how those two blend together. the warmth and power of Nadezhda’s voice and the warmth of the cello. Such clever songwriting, such clever arranging, I really love this band in so many ways by now. I love, for instance, how they pick up the speed halfway through Tam Nikto and make this song into a real grand musical adventure. This is songwriting at its very best. Forget about labels and names and styles. This is just 6:00 minutes of beautiful, well-composed music everybody – and I do mean everybody – should hear.

The same goes for Kryly, the second stunning ballad on Dreamcatcher. I’ve been in love with this song since the first time I heard it. Even without knowing what it is about (my Belarussian is a bit rusty) I could just feel how much this song means to Nadezhda. The intent is just pouring out of her with every single note she hits. With the lyrics it gets even better for me. Nadezhda writes most of the lyrics for Irdorath and these must have been one very close to her heart. A song that so deserves to be a true classic pop song.



But, there are more classic moments on Dreamcatcher. Take tracks six and seven, simply called Wedding Theme 1 and Wedding Theme 2. Well…, these were actually composed by Vladimir and Nadezhda for their own wedding! A wedding that took place……, ON STAGE!!!
I hope you don’t mind I won’t tell you any more about these two songs than that. Just watch the video below. The intimate moment at two/third if the song says soo much more than anything I could write. (I didn’t even know you could kiss while playing bagpipe 🙂 )



After all this romance and all these ballads its time to pick up the pace a bit and get our dancing shoes on again. Tochka Otscheta is just he song for that. A lovely groovy Slidgeridoo takes you into this Omnia -meets-Arabian-nights type of song that is both a dancing song AND a ballad. It is also the first time you clearly hear Vladimir use his Mongolian throat singing skills, adding yet another dimension to Irdorath’s diverse musical world.

And there is still more. Byu. Josť. Budu that suddenly takes you into the world of Ball Noir. Especially that hurdy-gurdy ‘riff’ could easily have been written by Lies Sommer or Marco van Asperen. Nadezhda shines on vocals again here, but also Vladimir’s spoken vocals are something special. Just another highlight on a CD that already has so many. Again, the way they build up this song to its climax gives me goosebumps. Really, and not for the first time while listening to Irdorath’s music, I have to add.

Tango is a lovely way to end this CD. Another epic ballad, in English this time, building up to a lovely finale. What an A-M-A-ZING CD.
But I’m not finished yet. I have saved the best for the very, very last! I am not going to bother to write a full conclusion, because I think that conclusion is pretty obvious. Dreamcatcher is a stunning alternative pagan folk-rock CD that you just MUST have in your collection.
To finish it all off, I’m going to insert one final video in here. My favourite song on Dreamcatcher. My favourite song by Irdorath actually. Crank this up as loud as you dare and enjoy it! This is Irdorath! This is music everybody should hear! This is instant goosebumps on a disc! This is Dimna Juda! And I LOVE IT!!!!!



Cliff

Editor: Sara
picture and video’s: Irdorath
Guest vocals on Dimna Juda: Alexandra Grachovskaja from the Belarusian Nu metal/punk/folk band BY CRY

Grumpy O Sheep – East of Talisker (2020) review



The first time I heard the band name ‘Grumpy O Sheep’ I immediately had pictures of some bearded, old Irish blokes in my head. I imagined a band which sound would come close to the Dubliners, rough and tough Irish folk music with a pint in the hand and a tear in the eye. When I heard the album for the first time I was convinced iI heard a Spanish band playing! I even wrote it down: ‘Cool that a Spanish band plays Irish music in this way. Cool that they call themselves Grumpy O Sheep, I love that sense of humor.’ But…, I was wrong again! First of all Grumpy O Sheep aren’t Spanish, they are French, and secondly, they are not a band, they are a duo.
Grumpy O Sheep 2 – CeltCast reviewer 0!
The biography of Grumpy O Sheep is short but sweet. They are Lu (violin) and Boss (guitar, flute) from the departement of Belfort ( a province in France near the Swiss/German border), who formed an Irish-Spanish folk duo in 2017. After doing a concert tour through France they started recording their first album East of Talisker, which came out in the spring of 2020. That is about it. Not that I mind. A review should be about the music anyway and trust me, there is a LOT to say about Grumpy O Sheep’s music. So let’s jump right in.

And ‘Jumping right in’ are the right words here. Opening track Say’s Gi features all the things that make Grumpy O Sheep’s sound so special. A perfect blend of Irish style violin taking the lead melody and a fiery Spanish style rhythm guitar, including the oh so familiar hand-slapping of the guitar body, taking care of the rhythm and beat. This is instant:’get in a good mood and start dancing‘ music. Say’s Gi is a compilation of three songs: Sight of Land, Humour of Castelfin and Temple House and they all marry so well together. The slight bit of Hall of the Mountain King woven in there as well is just the icing on the cake.

Say’s Gi is just a warm-up. There are way more good vibes to come! The flute and violin intro of Strawberries and Raddish instantly pushes the happy feel barometer up at least ten notches. Not to mention the way the rhythm guitar eventually crashes in for an instant party. So cool. This music just oozes out the cheer of Irish folk and the energy of Spanish acoustic music. And don’t forget the quirkiness of the French. That sudden wah-wah pedal on the Spanish guitar. I love that bit. I truly love it! Strawberries and Raddish is actually a compilation of the tunes Monaghan Jig and Drowsy maggie melted together. In their pure Irish form those tunes are already bursting with energy, add the Spanish rhythm to it and they become fountains of joie de vivre. That typical French joy of life.

With the third song Hunaman, the positive vibes go up one more time. Hunaman is a cover of the famous Mexican guitar duo Rodrigo y Gabriela, and trust me, you have to be brave to take on such a song, and really skilled to pull it off. Well, Lu and Boss are both. As with most of Grumpy O Sheep songs, Lu takes the lead melody, – in the original song played by Rodrigo-, giving it a lovely, different, but equally catchy feel. And Boss is more than capable to take on Gabriela’s rhythm part. I love this version of the song; the use of the violin makes it just that wee bit more melodic; it sings just that wee bit more. Thumbs up guys.



East of Talisker is not only filled with fast-paced, energetic dance tunes though. Inisheer is the first calmer, balladesque song to balance it all out. The gentle fingerpicking guitar melody temporarily calms down the mood. Time for our first glass of wine in enjoyment of this wonderful music. The violin gives this song a real French feel. You can feel there is a real story hidden in these violin notes, memories of faraway places, of almost forgotten dreams. And Lu is bringing them all back again. A lovely song, reminiscent of the Dutch duo Wouter en de Draak.

With Sheeps Are Sailing we go deep into the Irish musical heritage. So cool to hear how you can make a violin sound French in one song, and then so clearly Irish in the next. It is as if it is speaking in a different dialect all of a sudden. The middle part of this song, with all its fun effects, makes me realize how well this CD is recorded. It is Fresh and modern, just like the music itself. Although you hear ‘only’ a violin and guitar, it is recorded in a way, which makes the music fill up the whole room. The sound engineer makes maximum use of the stereo spectrum and the microphones are placed so well that you can hear every single sound. Up to Boss’s fingers whizzing over the neck of his guitar, swiftly going from one note to the next. In my eyes the standard to reach when it comes to recording folk music is that of Fieke van der Hurk and the Dearworld studio. Well, the team recording East of Talisker nailed it. The album sounds equally good!



Gravel Walk, the song above, is proof of that. A tune so catchy it stays in your head for days, if you’re not careful, and the sound. That sound! Just listen to that guitar filling up your earphones. Making a lovely bed for that catchy-as-hell violin melody. And then that finger tipping against the violin body to keep up the beat!!! I just love this!! I just love the whole CD!!! I just love the energy oozing out of it even before I open the CD case!!!

If you want to bring home the fun of Irish music, the energy of Spanish guitar and the ‘Joie the Vivre’ of the French, done with the vibrancy, only two young really talented musicians can bring, free of spirit and not bothered by rules, then East of Talisker is the album to get. Grumpy O sheep is a duo of artists, of entertainers, theatre people, and street musicians bundled in one package, and I loved every note of it. Vive Grumpy O’ Sheep!

Cliff

editor: Anna
picture: Grumpy O Sheep



PS. I couldn’t help it. I had to add just one more video, because it is so quirky, because it is so well played, and because it says so much about the attitude this duo has to their music and life in general. Enjoy!

Cuélebre – Dijara (2020) review


It was a Sunday morning, the 7th of August 2016, about 10:00 in the morning. It was slightly drizzly and we – my girlfriend, the SeeD crew, me, and a whole bunch of other Castlefest die-hards – were sitting on the hill overlooking the folk stage, listening to the gentle sounds of The Moon and the Nightspirit, while watching the Sunday crowd slowly filling up the grounds again. The perfect way to start a Castlefest morning.
Next up was a Spanish band that I, up to that point, didn’t know. But that was about to change! Fast! Within two songs that band had the whole crowd awake and dancing and me going for my camera. (You can see one of the pictures I took then just below this paragraph)
That band was Cuélebre and their show worked better for waking me up than a liter of strong espresso would ever do! Obviously I bought their CD Oinos straight after the show and it is still being played monthly in the De Booy household. Especially the song Fodder for the Raven I consider a firm pagan folk classic.

What makes Cuélebre and that first album Oinos, published in 2014, so unique is their dark tribal sound; The deep roar of the didge combined with fast energetic drums, the dominant sound of bandleader Yhandros Huergo’s hurdy-gurdy combined with the haunting flute melodies flowing through the music like morning fog over the roughed scorched Spanish mountains. Oinos makes me think of the pictures I’ve seen of Extremadura; the barren black peaks, the vultures circling the sky, a bobcat sliding through the undergrowth. Cuélebre makes the perfect soundtrack for that landscape: dark, tribal, and passionate. The whispered, half-sung, half-spoken vocals of Marta Gálves made it all complete, making Oinos a unique sound in the European pagan folk scene.

In August 2017 Cuélebre released their second album Anaman, with only bandleader Yhandros remaining from the line-up that recorded Oinos. It didn’t change Cuélebre’s sound too much though. The biggest change were the vocals, the then ‘new’ singer Rose Avalon (Rose Avalon, Ritual Duir) has a background in jazz and melodic metal. Her voice made Cuélebre’s music more dynamic, more powerful, but slightly less ‘haunted’. The whole album has a more positive feel over it, without losing that strong tribal connection to the old Iberian tribes and the roughed Spanish landscape.

Now, finally, the long-awaited third CD, Dijara arrived and it is a stunner! Like I mentioned before, there have been some line-up changes in the last couple of years, mainly in the vocal part, and again I was really interested in how it would affect Cuélebre ‘s sound. Well, to answer that straight away: Dijara is the perfect mix of Oinos and Anaman, taking the best elements of both albums. What remained is the strong tribal feel, the fast deep drums, and the haunting shards of flute cutting, weaving its way through the deep didge sound and the everpresent hurdy-gurdy. The vocals on the other hand returned to the more chanting, shamanic style we know of Oinos, something I personally think suites Cuélebre’s music really well. I feel like Cuélebre’s sound is slightly ‘mean’ again, that rough edge is back in the sound. And I personally love it.
Leiko Kei Tratt, Derwa, and Karuo are such strong vibrant dancing tunes, they are bursting with power and energy. Deva and Tanit, on the other hand, are slightly slower songs with that familiar haunting tribal sound, reminiscent of Fodder for the Raven, my favourite song of Cuélebre’s first record.



So is Dijara an Oinos part two? No, not at all. Cuélebre took some huge steps forward since then. First off there are those vocals. They are mostly recorded double and although Judith doesn’t use the exuberant vocal capacity of Rose Avalon, she does put in a lot more melody than Marta did. Not that one is better than the other, they just use different styles and I happen to like them all. A lot of the time Judith’s vocals remind me of Faun, especially on songs like Keinoman, Deva, and Leiko Kei Tratt. And I have to say, it fits the music of Cuélebre perfectly.
Another thing that progressed a lot is the overall sound of the album. While staying true to the original feel of Cuélebre, Yhandros put a lot of effort into the end mix, making the album sound way richer, more dynamic, and far more powerful then Oinos or even Anaman. The best example is the song Macha, starting out as a mid-tempo song reminiscent of Fodder for the Raven, it quickly builds up to a full-on energetic dance tune, with the same powerful build up as Cesair’s Canzo. No mean feat.

Another example is Derwa, a strong pagan folk song, acoustic, but with a drum/didge rhythm that would work perfectly as the basis of a ’90’s Eurodance song. Really? Yes really! And the best thing about it? It works! Victor has a didge style, quite similar to that of Daphyd Sens, which works perfectly in such a ‘modern’ interpretation of a tribal pagan folk beat.
Another example of the strong mixing skills on Dijara is the ‘choir’, kicking in halfway through Leiko Kei Tratt, making this vibrant tribal dance tune sound even more impressive. because of that I consider Leiko Kei Tratt, together with Derwa, one of the strongest tracks on this impressive CD.

Adding everything up I can conclude that Dijara is Cuélebre’s strongest album ’til now. Strong, powerful dynamic, and tribal. If I am looking for comparisons, then the sound of Cuélebre nowadays makes me sometimes think of Omnia, especially their famous rhythm section: Daphyd Sens and Rob van Barschot. Sometimes small segments of the music remind of Waldkauz (just listen to the flute solo leading us into Karuo for instance), in the first songs especially the vocals lead me towards the older material of Faun, and even Brisinga’s impressive vocalists pop up one time as a reference (Listen to the spoken vocals on Macha, they are just as strong as Brisinga’s vocals on Sinä Ja Minä), but these are all references. Add everything up and the sound is 100% recognizably Cuélebre. With Dijara the Spanish band settles themselves firmly at the top of the pagan folk scene. Congratulations Cuélebre, you did all did a hell of a job on this one!

– Cliff



-editor: Sara Weeda
-picture’s:
1 Cliff de Booy taken at Castlefest 2016
2,3 courtesy of Cuélebre


Salt House – Huam (2020) Review



This is the creature

“This is the creature there has never been.
They never knew it, and yet, none the less,
they loved the way it moved, its suppleness,
its neck, its very gaze, mild and serene.

Not there, because they loved it, it behaved
as though it were. They always left some space.
And in that clear unpeopled space they saved
it lightly reared its head, with scarce a trace
of not being there.

They fed it, not with corn,
but only with the possibility
of being. And that was able to confer
such strength, its brow put forth a horn. One horn.
Whitely it stole up to a maid – to be
within the silver mirror and in her.”

Rainer Maria Rilke
It might seem a bit odd, starting a folk CD review with poem, but for me, writing a review is not about judging and dissecting the music. It is all about sharing. Sharing what I hear and what music does to me. In this particular case, the music Salt House recorded, had my mind drift off to this poem time and time again. I’ll tell you why. The power of This is the Creature is that every word is carefully selected to be there, none more needed, none more written. Every word opens up a space to wander into. It is real, yet it is not. And most importantly, Rainer Maria Rilke uses the power of limitation. Less is more. Less is beautiful.

The first track on Huam, called Fire Light, starts just like that. It is just a single guitar melody and a voice. Nothing more, nothing less. A warming tender voice though. A poetic voice too. And that is it. That is all you need for a beautiful song. Yes, there is the added violin, that subtle sound of the dulcimer, that build-up to a beautiful ballad, but it never takes away from the essence of the song: the words, the poetry in it.



Beautiful poetic music, Singer-songwriter folk at it’s very best

The sixth track If I Am Lucky is equally beautiful. Again that beautiful combination of a guitar and a voice, beautiful harmonies, and a gentle but really catchy hook weave through the song. But once again this is all to support the words, the poetry. All three members of Salt House are storytellers, singer-songwriters in the purest form, never overdone, never overdramatic. Always honest, with a sprinkling of tenderness and positivity that I just love. Every single note of it. In older folk songs there is often a lot of pure storytelling. Think of songs like The Well, Twa Corbies, Matty Groves or Little Duke Arthur’s Nurse. With Lord Ullins Daughter, Salt House also recorded such an old story, and it is the perfect combination of story and music. It has a slightly darker feel than the first two songs I described, achieved just by a simple guitar rhythm at just the right tone and the viola ‘creeping’ under it. Who needs all kinds of fancy keyboard effects if you have a voice, guitar and viola? Not Salt House!

Huam – the Scots name for the call of an owl – is Salt House’s third album. In 2013 Siobhan Miller (vocals, harmonium), Ewan MacPherson (guitar, vocals, banjo, Jews harp), Lauren MacColl (viola, fiddle, vocals) and Euan Burton (double bass, Rhodes piano, vocals) recorded the debut album Lay Your Dark Low. An album equally as beautiful as Huam, slightly richer in arrangements but lovely Celtic singer-songwriter folk. Don’t expect any dance tunes on Salt House’s albums: the band’s focus is on the storytelling side of folk, and they do this in a fresh and modern way that is reminiscent of like-minded artists like Back of the Moon, Findlay Napier , or Cara. In a slightly different line-up (Singer-songwriter Jenny Sturgeon joining Ewan MacPherson and Lauren MacColl) the band recorded the more balladesque record Undersong (2018). On Undersong the band focusses even more on the lyrics side of a song, while the instruments becoming a ‘simple’ accompaniment to the songs. Like a simple dressing to a salad.

On Huam Jenny, Ewan, Lauren and producer Andy Bell (who also worked with them on Undersong) added just that touch more melody and interest to the arrangements, making Huam sound like the perfect balance between Lay Your Dark Low and Undersong. To keep the salad comparison up, this time we don’t have a salad-with-dressing. Instead, we find little added surprises: some sundried tomatoes, some honey roasted cashew nuts, some rosemary spiced goats cheese, spicing up the ‘basic’ salad ever so nicely into something really delicate and special (And yes, I DID go to a fancy restaurant the evening before I wrote this review)

We are already getting to the end of the review. Just as the music on Huam, less is more. Huam is a truly stunning album that both me and my lovely editor Iris love. (Actually, we all love it at CeltCast HQ, Fire Light has even been voted to be the Monthly Marker for August.)
Sometimes I can compare Salt House’s music with the early work of Rachel Croft (The Disquiet for instance), sometimes with Cara (just listen to Union of Crows and you’ll understand why). Sometimes the band sounds light and cheerful like on All Shall Be Still, sometimes deeply traditional like on William and Elsie, and sometimes even Christmassy (add some *sleighbells* and Mountain Of Gold is the next CeltCast Christmas hit). Most of all they sound pure and honest, making Huam a beautiful singer-songwriter folk album. It’s one that I will be playing many times more after publishing this review. An A+ album if I would be giving points.



– Cliff

– Editor: Iris
– Picture: Salt House

Arthuan Rebis – La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo (2020) Review



When it comes to selecting the albums that we want to review Ilona and I work very closely together. Sometimes I find a band and enthusiastically share it with Ilona to get it played on Celtcast, so I am allowed to write a review on it. And sometimes Ilona drops me a line when she finds something really special in her mailbox. And that is just what happened with La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo. It started with one small line:
-‘Cliff, at the moment I’m chatting with Arthuan Rebis.
That was it. But five days later I got another message from Ilona:
-‘Cliff, I’m going to send a very special album to you. It is from the Italian artist Arthuan. He made this record as a Corona lock-down project, and I love it!!
Well, messages like that made me discover beautiful music of bands like Cara, Vilsevind and Rachel Croft, so my expectations were high! And, as always, I was not disappointed. La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo is an intriguing musical fairytale, calming, peaceful, and meditative. Arthuan Rebis recorded it all by himself, only assisted by narrator Paolo Tofani.
So come, let us travel to Italy together. Let’s travel to a spring that belonged only to the fairy people. Let’s go and listen to a story that started not that long ago. A story that started on March the 21st of this year.
Arthuan Rebis is the artist’s name of Italian composer, multi-instrumentalist, and free-spirited mind Alessandro Arturo Cucurnia. Arthuan, as we will continue to call him, has built up a quite interesting back catalog. Since 2011 he is a member of the Italian medieval/dance/performance act In Vino Veritas. We did a review on their latest album Grimorium Magi not that long ago [link]. He is also the founding member of The Magic Door, a band he started with film director, actress, and songwriter Giada Colagrande. We will dive into this intriguing band in a later review, but, having said that, those interested in world folk and art-pop should check this band out straight away.
Over the years Arthuan has studied traditional music from across the world. Finding an equal love for Nordic folk, Celtic music, and Eastern (read Mongolian, Tibetan, Chinese, and Indian) traditional music. His interest is also not limited by a time period, he is just as happy to play Medieval traditionals with In Vino Veritas as he is playing modern art-folk with The Magic Door.

All of those influences have found their way on La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo. A musical fairytale the artist started writing at the start of the Corona outbreak and subsequent lockdown, and that he finished around a month later. Aurore Invisibili, the first song on La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo, is a blueprint for the whole album. If you love this song you’ll love the whole album. No question about it! When I first heard it I described it as a mix of Emian and Vael. Calm meditative music almost leaning towards the new age sound, but never as sugar-coated.
In this song, no on this whole album, Arthuan brings two worlds together. On one hand you have the European folk side with instruments like the nyckelharpa, classical guitar, and harp. On the other you have the eastern influences of the Hulusi – a Chinese reed instrument – with its slightly haunted tone and the Indian Esraj – a string instrument played with a bow.
The combination of the two worlds gives you beautiful instrumental ballads, with a slightly sad and melancholic feel to them that just captures you deep within. Vael introduced the word Pan folk – world folk – to describe their music, and this is world folk at its very very best!



…A voice warm enough to melt chocolate icecream…

The title song La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo starts with Narrator Paolo Tofani reciting the first part of the fairy tale Arthuan has created. And what a voice Paolo has. A voice warm enough to melt chocolate icecream in a fridge. Rarely have I met somebody with soo much love in his voice. I now fully understand why women looooove Italians. Hearing Paolo talk even I go weak in the knees!
The story itself is about the fairy Alidoro. Here is what Arthuan tells us about it on his bandcamp page :
‘This album is a sort of “Musical Fairytale”, a guided journey, a night flight on the wings of the fairy Alidoro, in search of a disappeared humanity and the Great Heart. I started composing the music on March 21, 2020 and I finished the arrangements and mixing exactly one month later. This was my way of channeling and transforming the “lockdown” energies: trying to evoke the inspiration of Love of an Invisible Elsewhere that I have always perceived as present.

Well, I can tell you Arthuan succeeded. He is a wonderful composer! Honnestly. The way he combines the European folk sound with Eastern folk music. The way he manages to calm you down with every note he plays. Deliberately choosing the notes that will gently ease your mind in a gentle flow of relaxation. I have loved playing this record after a stressful workday, just to relax. The Third song Venti di Impermanenza is a perfect example of what I just described. It is such a beautiful song, that I have no words for it. Actually it is better that I have none, words would only disturb the moment.
Danze di Alidoro e Specchi di Rugiada is another one of those wonderful compositions. And Arthuan takes his time in this one. For 11:08 minutes he captives you in this 4 part world folk suite. In English the title of the song translates to: The dance of Alidoro in between mirrors of dew and it is done so exquisitely, so tastefully. Please listen to that beautiful rhythmical harp melody, repetative but never getting boring. Listen to those beautiful notes of the esraj and guitar, those touches of synthesizer, always coming and going, the music ever so gently increasing in strength, representing the waking day. It all sounds so simple and in that lies its beauty. Less is more. Let me rephrase that! less is pure beauty!

…This record is as pure as you can get…

Vael, Emian, new age music and every now and again touches of Mike Oldfield. That were the references that came to my mind while listening to la Primavera de Piccolo Popolo. Not totally true actually, I had one more reference I wrote down, but at first I discarded it as too obvious. I have a T’ai Chi CD at home – music purely made for meditation – and La Primavera del Piccolo Popolo has that same calming effect on me. ‘This would be such wonderful music to meditate to‘ I wrote. But as I said, I found it too obvious. I feared that, together with my reference to new age music, it would push this album in one certain corner. A corner that, considering all its quality, wouldn’t do justice to this wonderful album. So I decided to leave it out. That was until I read Arthuan’s biography and the part about his holistic activities:
‘ Since he was a child he has cultivated vocation, study, and research about spirituality and esotericism. He currently conducts seminars of the magical science of sound, meditation with the elements and connection and interaction with the invisible worlds.’

Well, you hear all that in la Primavera de Piccolo Popolo. This record is as pure as you can get. This album IS Alessandro Arturo Cucurnia in his musical form. This is everything he stands for.
The fact that it was created in just a month’s time is its biggest asset. It means the music isn’t polished out. It has kept its freshness, its innocence, its purity. This is the essence of Arthuan Rebis. This is the essence of what he wanted to say. And he said it beautifully!!! Thank you Arthuan!! Thank you Alidoro, for flying out that night in March, so we all could hear your wonderful story!

– Cliff

– editor: Anna Schürmann
– pictures: Arthuan Rebis






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