FAME Review: Hendrik Meurkens / Gabriel Espinosa - Celebrando
Hendrik Meurkens / Gabriel Espinosa - Celebrando


Hendrik Meurkens / Gabriel Espinosa

ZOHO Music - ZM201204

Available from CD Baby.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Mark S. Tucker

Ahhhhh, Hendrik Meurkens is back with that accordionesqued harmonica of his in yet another very relaxing but fascinating exposition of samba and kindred latinate musics. Celebrando is a smooth and easy release, going down like a prize appertif, but also features a number of chamber elements, as in Slow Breeze with Jim Seeley's arty trumpet elements. Frenzelosa, however, picks up the pace, almost a swing bolero, dancey as ya please while summertime bouncy on an afternoon in Brazilian esplanades. Alison Wedding adds in sensually breezy melismatic vocals while Anat Cohen larks a clarinet on three cuts, and pretty soon we have a perfect ambiance.

Gabriel Espinosa plies an organic bass like fat raindrops of warm summer rain pooling beneath the band, Antonio Sanchez and Mauricio Zottarelli manning the drums in light rolling waves of percussion. Nor can Misha Tsiganov's piano be ignored. This guy really has a touch and tempo that add tremendously to the forward progression of each cut, very deft, with excellent chordal choices and alluring fills all over the place. He's also one of those keyboardists who also excels at blending in, coloring up everything in tandem with everyone else.

This disc is the Zoho label's 100th issuance, and the company couldn't have picked a more delightful release thuswise. Celebration indeed! There's so much light and a rainbow of hues in this disc. Especially in trying times such as we're now enduring, art like this is badly needed as succor against too much tension and darkness. You can't help but smile and adopt a dreamy countenance once the CD starts up, carried through all the way to the very last cut, a Celebrando from start to finish. It may not be Summer yet, but, hell, toss on some shorts and a brightly colored shirt or blouse, grab a margarita, gather some friends together, and shed the workaday worries and hassle for a fling in the Spring with this gamboling group of musicians.

Track List:

  • La Esperanza
  • Slow Breeze
  • Frenzelosa (Choro No 2)
  • Odessa in April
  • Pa Rio
  • Out of Reach
  • La Puerta
  • She Lives in Brazil
  • Maya Roots
  • Mountain Drive
  • Celebrando

Edited by: David N. Pyles

Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
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