Friday, August 22, 2014

Elektra Kurtis Ensemble Elektra, AFROdite's Smile

I was very happy when Elektra Kurtis send me some of her CDs to investigate. I am equally happy to post this review of yet another, the third I've covered (one is covered here; another is on the Gapplegate Music Review Blog). Here is yet another Ensemble Elektra offering, from 2004, entitled AFROdite's Smile (Milo 107).

As the liner notes for this one spell out, Ensemble Elektra devotes itself to the interrelations of musics from Greece, Egypt and the Middle-East, along with jazz, rock and blues influences. This one succeeds as do the others. There may be a touch more of Elektra's special violin playing to be had on this one, and that is just great because she has a beautiful sound and her own way. But the ensemble remains critical. This version includes Spiros Exaras on electric guitar, Lefteris Bournias on clarniet and ney, Brad Jones on electric and acoustic basses and Reggie Nicholson on drums. Everyone not surprisingly is very capable and each has a good deal to do with the ensemble's special sound.

As is the case on all the albums Elektra's compositions have a special flare and make important use of the capabilities and artistic personalities of the individual members in the creation of the sounds and modalities of the music.

Fusion, yes, but a most particular fusion unique to Elektra and the band. This is another very good outing that has muscle and finesse, great compositional frameworks, Elektra in an outgoing mood on violin, and a band that has power and depth.

This might not be the first album to get of hers, but it is excellent nonetheless.

Hear this one!

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