Classic and Innovative Hykes...
John Grunwell | Washington, D.C. | 12/27/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"David Hykes. My favorite musician who goes "errrrrrrrrrr" in cathedrals and other such resonant venues. I love Hykes music so much, and I'd been listening to him for a while when this CD came out, the first Choir recording in a long time (since "Current Circulation?"). I bought this almost upon its release, and I've had quite a few years since then to absorb it. Is my third favorite choir CD, but I think it far outshines in accessibility David Hykes recent "solo" efforts, which tend to be much more thematically and musically esoteric. This has some amazing sounds on it, much more "world music" esque than anything else the Choir has released. The most inessential track is the first; it's yet another Hykes solo. It feels rushed, and the sound isn't quite as deep as his solos on "Hearing Solar Winds" or "Harmonic Meetings." However, "Brotherhood Returning" is one of the most simple, beautiful pieces I've heard on the Choir's recordings, and it echoes the sound of "HM"'s "Brotherhood," but with an insistent rhythm, rather than melodies floating through the ether. The piece that features French translations of Sufi poetry about Christ is the real highlight of the album. Here, for the first time, is a distinct Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan/Qawwali influence. The Choir sounds at times exactly like a Qawwali party as they introduce a piece with the ever-rising, clashing and shimmering "chords." If you like Hykes, you'll love this album. If this was recommended to you and you're a newcomer to this music, please don't make this your first Harmonic Choir purchase. The classic recordings "Harmonic Meetings" and "Hearing Solar Winds" are far more essential. The latter also has one of the most apt titles in all of music. You'll understand if you hear it! Either way, if you really want to support Mr. Hykes' efforts, you should purchase this directly from his website, rather than a secondary source like amazon.com."