Search - Djivan Gasparyan, Michael Brook :: Black Rock

Black Rock
Djivan Gasparyan, Michael Brook
Black Rock
Genres: Dance & Electronic, World Music, Jazz, New Age, Pop
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #1

Djivan Gasparyan and Michael Brook have both made their mark in the musical world as artists that have deep devotion and skill, as well as innovative streaks that can get them in trouble sometimes. They seem to have found ...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Djivan Gasparyan, Michael Brook
Title: Black Rock
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 1
Label: Real World
Original Release Date: 10/20/1998
Release Date: 10/20/1998
Genres: Dance & Electronic, World Music, Jazz, New Age, Pop
Styles: Ambient, Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, Meditation
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 724384623029

Djivan Gasparyan and Michael Brook have both made their mark in the musical world as artists that have deep devotion and skill, as well as innovative streaks that can get them in trouble sometimes. They seem to have found an outlet for all of these abilities on Black Rock. Their collaboration is an inspired idea, and through much of this recording the Canadian guitarist and the Armenian duduk (oboe) master and singer find some gorgeous common ground--counterpoints of darkness and light, and conflicts befitting the source and subject matter of their work together. The temptations to studio additions seems to have beguiled them and producer Richard Evans into some rather well-traveled aural clich&eacut;s, however, and a number of the tracks here are lightweight fusions designed for identifiable mood rather than substance. Each musician is a talented individual who has clearly found inspiration in the other, but the translation to disc is uneven, with high moments of beautiful pathos undercut but by just one more easy-to-approach rhythm track. --Louis Gibson

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CD Reviews

Beyond Platitudes
Rebecca Whiting | Beautiful Bell Gardens, CA | 11/19/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"To describe this music is to resort to cliches: ethereal, haunting, mystical, poignant, melancholy, moody. It is commonly acknowledged that the music of the duduk (an Armenian instrument rather like an abbreviated oboe made of -- how curious -- peach root) has a plaintive and slightly nasal sound. Thus the cliches.Armenian prodigy Djivan Gasparyan is the indubitable master of the duduk. Canadian guitarist Michael Brook is an old hand at collaboration efforts, mingling his "infinite guitar" and ambient effects with traditional music. Bear in mind that Michael Brook productions are so-called "world fusion music". Such albums often offend purist fans of the folk music which they see being warped by electronica. If you can accept the genre, check out this album, which is one of the best representations.Cliches apart, it is hard to describe the music. It is like the sense of striving and desperation when you remember your homeland in a far away place. It is like the clenching feeling in your chest when someone beloved passes by and you breathe in their afterscent. Or simply breathing an odor you remember, but cannot identify.In short, it is good mood music. The editorial review was incorrect in saying this production sacrifices complexity to capturing a mood. While not supremely challenging, there are a few layers that teasingly reveal themselves on repeated listening. It is worthwhile music.Ultimately, the melody of the duduk has the final word. You just have to listen. I cannot tell you -- I'm out of cliches."
Music that Penetrates the Soul
Erika Borsos | Gulf Coast of FL, USA | 05/12/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The musical connection of the steel guitar and the Armenian duduk provides rare glimpses into unexplored crevices and caverns of the soul. I was surprised at how the lonely sounds of the duduk could wrap and wind around my heart, creating feelings of exhilaration/exaltation, penetrating every cell and fiber of my being. The sounds of the duduk leave an indelible imprint on the heart and mind which remains with you long after the music stops playing. The voice of Djivan Gasparyan adds a rare ethereal dimension to one's awareness and being as it breaks the solitary musical interlude. When I listen to this CD, I am transported to another place in time and space. Djivan's voice resembles the haunting voices of Yiddish and klezmer singers, passionate emotions, love, anguish, memories ... the music evokes this & much, much more. This music is a fusion of the past and present, it is an unexpected tapestry woven from the bass guitar, keyboards, some programming, and of course, the essential ingredient, the master instrument, the duduk. "Black Rock" is named for volcanic landscapes, produced from firey lava, arising from deep within the earth ... so too does this music arise from the internal heat of the the musicians themselves. The sounds soothe us as the instruments, old and new blend together create enchanting, inspiring, timeless melodies.
Erika Borsos (erikab93)"
Yalcin Savas | FOCA, IZMIR Turkey | 09/21/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"If you are dealing with duduk and/or similar instruments, you should buy this. On the other hand, I can say, I think it might be better when I think about the quality of Gasparyan and Brook."