Calix is a Brazilian group that plays some very interesting prog with a variety of influences, although their music is mostly progressive folk-rock oriented. Musically the band uses at least a dozen different instruments including the flute, harmonica, violin, piano and some traditional Brazilian folk instruments. The album "Canções de Beurin", released in 2000. This is definitely some well-arranged Folk/Symphonic Rock with rich, lush arrangements, centered around the beautiful flute work of Renato Savassi, surrounded by a great group of musicians, who create a majestic and energetic sound. The tracks are full of smooth, professional interplays between flutes and keyboards, some incredible folky melodies and plenty of sensitive vocal lines, mostly sung in Portuguese…
The new solo album of Toyohiko Satoh, the 72 year old Japanese lutenist who is considered my many as one of the most influential lute players of the last century, presents a well-known repertoire of baroque lute music. Mr. Satoh was the first lutenist to record Bach’s lute music on LP in the 70s (Phillips). Now he returns to this music 40 years later, delivering a completely different rendering of these iconic pieces. His playing has been influenced much by his studies of traditional Japanese arts such as tea ceremony, No-theater and Zen meditation. So here we are presented a recording that draws from the deep silence within, from the awareness of everything in the universe being connected, and from the understanding of Bach’s music as a universal, almost superhuman symbol of completeness.
In 1989, Steps Ahead consisted of Mike Mainieri on MIDI vibraharp, synclavier and acoustic piano, the young saxophonist Bendik doubling on keyboards, guitarist Steve Kahn, Tony Levin on electric bass and Chapman stick, and drummer Steve Smith. The powerful band did not have a great deal of subtlety by this era, but it helped to keep the much-maligned genre of fusion alive, mixing the sound of rock with jazz improvising.
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