World Without Walls
(Capitol/EMI Records 2011) (USA)
21 years after the release of the already classic "World Without Walls" the original lineup of "Ancient Future" reunited in a series of shows at Yoshi's in SF On this occasion Capitol/EMI Records launched the first digital version of this influential album that marked not just the career of the band and its members but represents a reference of the World Music phenomenon.
The original album released in 1990 features 10 songs that mix Oriental, Celtic and African inspired rhythms with modern jazzy beats, and subdued lyricism with melodic creativity. As the title of the album suggests there's no walls between musical influences but we can say that there's no wall between these virtuoso performers, whose joyful interplay delights the listener with a fusion of exotic and western harmonies that sound like chamber music. The three composers of the album Jim Hurley on violin, Matthew Montfort guitars, Doug McKeehan piano, synthesizers looked for inspiration to ancient lands of musical tradition , bringing the African, Balinese, Chinese, Indian, Middle eastern sounds into a modern setting that preserves their original savor. It is a surprising and enchanting synthesis of classical, modern and exotic crafted with the art of a jeweler. Talking drum, bells, chimes, dumbek, udu, bass drums, sleigh bells and tabla (played by Zakir Hussein on 3 songs) keep the rhythm alive and fresh, while organically blending into the compositions. An album that is also inviting to listen more from what this legendary band has produced over the years.