New CDs

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New CDs

Didgeridoo Concerto
Enrec Studios through Larrikin
Duende
Ellipsis Arts
Reviewed by Francesca Davidson

Didgeridoo Concerto is an impressive 51 minutes of solo didgeridoo playing by musician Mark Atkins — reputedly Australia's leading Aboriginal didgeridoo player.

The orchestra of this "concerto" is made up of the sounds of nature: the wind, the rain, a dog barking and insects. The result is the rather soothing music of rhythmic didgeridoo backed by rainforest sounds and water. In this sense it is similar to the nature relaxing tapes that are popular at present. The CD is tailored to didgeridoo fans, however, and some may find the music a little monotonous.

Duende is a superb collection of flamenco music. Three CDs cover the development of flamenco from its earliest roots in the Moorish kingdom in Granada in southern Spain and its North African sounds, to today's music.

Featuring many of flamenco's great performers such as Luis de Cordoba and Ramon Montoya, it comes with a 48-page book outlining the history of flamenco and brief accounts of the performers.

Passion, the first CD, is heavily marked with the passionate lyrics and intricate melodies of what most would identify as "gypsy" music and reflects its North African influence strongly.

Magic, the second CD, reflects the move away from vocals to more intricate and rhythmically complex guitar music.

Exploration presents the latest in flamenco as more traditional music merges with influences of India and Latin America.

The collection does follow the Spanish flamenco tradition rather closely and to the exclusion of newer developments in other countries. For example, it does not include the more recent work of Ottmar Liebert — to its detriment. Nevertheless, the breadth and richness of the music in this collection make it a must for any follower of flamenco music.

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