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The Sounding Board by R J Lannan
RJ Lannan is the reviewer for The Sounding Board.
Other reviews from The Sounding Board by R J Lannan:
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The Next Dream
By Yoed Nir
Label: Two Sheps That Pass
Released 6/14/2014
It’s Just a Dream
The opening sequence to Yoed Nir's album, The Next Dream is a song called Awaken Love. It is eerie and beautiful at the same time. The echoing voice of Sonya Kitchell graces the tune turning the experience into a dream within a dream. Nir's intro is chilling physically and the cello takes on an expressive lead. This isn't a drowsy daydream; this is a musical event that transpires like a time-lapse video as the music suggests changes and emergence.

Yoed Nir was born in Israel where he studied music from the age of seven. Like many, he began in classical music, but soon branched out to other genres, namely jazz, rock, and pop. If I were to list all his credits, it would take up the entire review. Suffice it say his name is credited on over six hundred albums. His latest work, The Next Dream is more contemporary with World elements that give it a broad appeal. The music is a string of dream-inspired tunes or perhaps that are tunes that inspire dreams. You be the judge. There some very good vocal intonations on the recording courtesy of the above mentioned Sonya Kitchell, and Keiko Ishibashi play narrator while violinist Kishi Bashi (Lighght – actual spelling if his album) offers his talents on one of the cuts.

I liked the song Devil's Dance for its thrumming rhythm and high energy. This is one for the stage performance. Only something supernatural could keep pace with the music. The song Time is Up had a raucous beginning, but settled down to a flowing ballad and then picks up again with an upbeat tempo. Call it a rolling rude awakening. There’s something funky going on as the music stirs the spirit.

The tune No Chance Survival reminded me of a performance piece of Cirque du Soleil and that made it fascinating. It had a Middle Eastern theme that was appealing and added an air of mystery to the experience. It was my favorite on the album. To the Unknown had an almost subliminal intro, but I caught it after several listenings. The lively tune features electric violin by Kishi Bashi and defines traveling music. I know it made me want to sign up for the trip.

I mistook the cello for an electric guitar on the track My Last Breath. It is an odd ditty featuring some light vocals and discordant runs, but it all evens out into a coherent samba-like amalgam of percussive notes that end up lighter than I expected. The song It's a New Beginning had a swirling sensation that changed to a feeling of achieved balance. It was like the proverbial first step on a new journey.

Burned With Desire is a story song that had a style like...dare I say it, Cowboy Swing. Of course I was obviously mislead by the Japanese story line, but the song was fun nonetheless. For a song that represents a dream, I can't imagine what brought it on. And finally, the last track is Travelling Through the Dark. It was one of the more complex tunes on The Next Dream. Amazingly, the tune never took an ominous turn, but was actually more of a guide through a coal black night. A hopeful guide at that.

Yoed Nir's music is a fusion fest that offers out of the ordinary combinations and bits and pieces of different genres, but they all seem to mesh well under his capable hand. His experiences in hundreds of collaborations is in evidence in every tune and I liked it for its diversity.
Rating: Very Good   Very Good
- reviewed by RJ Lannan on 11/1/2014
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