Tag / neoclassical

Günther Beckers music has a perfect word for it: Gesamtkunstwerk. Gesamtkunstwerk is an interdisciplinary artistic work combining various disciplines — music, painting, poetry and design. Wagner conjured up this idea when trying to produce a work that could also wrap in artistic ideas derived from theatrical, poetic, and musical influences. Aesthetics would be the English word […]

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A personal favorite of mine, not because it’s his greatest work — I’d wager more people expect the late, great Swedish guitar maestro Thomas Almqvist’s Balearic masterpiece Nyanser to be that one — but because it’s the one that sounds the most honest to where I come from. Thomas Almqvist’s The Journey was his second […]

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There’s something about fall that makes me play Hiroshi Yoshimura’s music much more often. On prior albums like Green, A・I・R (Air In Resort), and Soundscape 1: Surround, Hiroshi perfectly seized on exactly what “environmental music” could be and how it could differ from BGM (background music). No longer mere ambient music, it was decidedly rich, melodic experimentation […]

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These are the kind of stories that make me smile. Truth be told, there is desperately little story out there to tell of Takami Hasegawa’s sole release L’Ecume Des Jours (a nod to Boris Vian’s novel Froth on the Daydream…). Singer-songwriter Takami Hasegawa from Fukushima decides to release an album of Gallic-style, Les Disques du […]

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/ June 9, 2017 / Comments Off on Juan Martin: Painter In Sound ft. Mark Isham (1986)

Juan Martin: Painter In Sound ft. Mark Isham (1986)

Simply sublime. What else can you say? From the man who literally wrote the definitive word on Flamenco technique, comes a work showing the full expanse of his personal creative method. Juan Martin is one of the most iconic names in Nuevo Flamenco. Somewhere, down the line, his lifelong interest in art and painting (owing a […]

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/ May 1, 2017 / Comments Off on Alap Jetzer: Eternity’s Sunrise (1986)

Alap Jetzer: Eternity’s Sunrise (1986)

Sun-lit, rainbow music for respite after rainy days. That’s how I would describe Alap Jetzer’s largely acoustic renditions of Hindu guru Sri Chinmoy’s compositions. Attracted to the same devotional spiritual path that struck other musicians like Pete Townshend, Carlos Santana, Narada Michael Walden, and Roberta Flack, so was this young Swiss instrument maker and multi-instrumentalist […]

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Just look at that album cover. Mio Fou’s self-titled debut has an album cover that has fascinated me to no end. You see, the utterly sublime music found in Mio Fou must have some connection to this image. For months I struggled to define what time of the year this picture was taken and what time of […]

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/ March 20, 2017 / Comments Off on Mix: 3. What Do You Do When It’s Spring?

Mix: 3. What Do You Do When It’s Spring?

In a way, rebirth is exactly what my third mix is about. Taking cues from various feelings springtime evokes, I wanted to compile a set of songs that moved in concert with the season. By themselves, each song has a faint musical seed that germinates and blooms into a much more pronounced, powerful direction. However, taken as part of a whole, despite […]

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/ March 13, 2017 / Comments Off on dip in the pool: Retinae (1989)

dip in the pool: Retinae (1989)

Paris in the winter must be a whole lot different than any other time of the year. Yes, the feeling of romance and culture is still there, but the atmosphere to take it all in must impress all sorts of different stimulations. Romance, city and lights, filtered through multiple environmental layers, meet a more distinct cessation […]

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/ March 8, 2017 / Comments Off on Macias: Regreso a Valencia (1988)

Macias: Regreso a Valencia (1988)

One of my favorite albums from one of my favorite record label series. Largely piano-based, José Luis Macias’s Regreso a Valencia (Returning to Valencia) touched on that personal essence that made other albums like Toshifumi Hinata’s or Ichiko Hashimoto’s so intimate and gorgeous. Combining western-style minimalism with their own more regional, neoclassical styles, all these releases affect austerity at first, but […]

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