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Saturday, January 18, 2014

CD Review: Javier Vercher/Ferenc Nemeth – Imaginary Realm

Javier Vercher (ten/perc); Ferenc Nemeth (perc) + David Kikoski (pno 4 tracks).
(Review by Steve Horowitz)
Spanish born  tenor saxophonist  Javier Vercher and Hungarian born percussionist Ferenc Nemeth team up to produce their second album in six years.  The duo  become a trio with the addition of Pianist David Kikoski  who guests on 4 of the tracks. The album opens with a short intro Silent Stones wonderful interplay between Sax and percussion conjure up a dreamy tropical ambiance. Kikoski leads out the title track Imaginary Realm , saxophone and percussion then combine in a gentle almost classical atmospheric manner. 
Poets of the East is a haunting tune inspired by the Far East rather than our own North East I imagine. The combination of percussion and tenor once more creates a wonderful atmosphere. The piano features again  in Form and Meaning giving us the most straight ahead trio piece on the album. A short percussion solo by Nemeth Drums leads into Prana a subtle sparse saxophone is accompanied by the elegant brush work of Nemeth. Circles in the Sky is a more tense affair on the saxophone but with a calypso style percussion accompaniment!  Sumerian Magic Spells is another short percussion solo but this time it features Vercher on an African Sound Box.  The liveliest track  on the album Giant Henge sees the trio giving it a real go with the very enthusiastic playing providing a great uplift.  A reprise of Prana this time played solely by Kikoski on piano concludes the named tunes on the album. However there is a hidden bonus track awaiting. A  conventional but nevertheless  extremely enjoyable rendition off Ellington’s Come Sunday played by the  trio.
Whilst contemplating the CD Sleeve  I was able  create a whole new set of titles by simply combining  some of the track names for example we could have Stones Henge , The Magic Circle , Giant Drums , Sumerian Sky , Imaginary Poets, Spell Form and Meaning and The Silent East. Joking aside this album is a magnificent collaboration by 2 guys who are clearly at one with each other the subtle meditative intertwining of the instruments create a wonderfully atmospheric evocative piece.
Steve H.

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