Now this is one great group! An admixture of Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Long Hello, Michael Nyman, a very agreeable blend of Phillip Glass' serial and non-serial sides, Roger Eno's chamber sensibilities, and God only knows what sophisticated othernesses, Sagapool manages to craft fine refrains that could easily have come out on the Sonori Materieli, Obscure, or even ECM labels (in the lattermost, think of Eleni Karaindrou and ilk). Thus, for all those reasons and influences, I'm afraid they may not be able to locate a strong audience for their work, as it's much too intelligent within our present conservative and moribund aggregate of global cultures.
Nonetheless, there are indeed those who cherish refinement and high art, and Canada persists in not giving a damn about commerciality beyond a certain small threshold. Thank God for that, else we'd never, back in the day, have seen works like Johnston & Campbell's Impact nor this unique Sagapool release today. Completely instrumental, gracefully serene, with splashes of East European vivacity, the sextet is pursuing a sort of Romantic/Impressionist/progressive form of art music which arose and seemed to begin to flourish in the 70s only to rapidly fade as the boorish element of punk—that is to say: most of it—drowned out such gorgeous endeavors.
The group ostensibly began as a klezmer ensemble, so you understand the degree of ultra-cool right there, but quickly transcended those borders to straddle any number of modes coalescing into a present unclassifiable position with more than a little Oregon in the mix. Sagapool is soothing while intellectually stimulating, a Mediterranean balminess pervading its picturesque compositions, Astor Piazzola occasionally peeking in (Marcel) even if only in spirit in a tune with very witty adjuncts. I suspect Sagapool will very soon be scoring films, as their work is sublimely lyrical, lush, and classically evocative…but will they score a nice little following right here, right now? I'm too much a misanthrope to think so, but, man, do they ever deserve it!
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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