Luis Muñoz: Luz (2013)
How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Luis Muñoz gathers strength with each of his recordings as he goes past the post of the previous one, making new ideas and developments his haunt. Luz, as the title would suggest, injects new light into his music.
Muñoz conceives and marvelous executes his game plan. Driving the rhythm and the beat from the drummer's seat he opens up new vistas for his band. Form and genre are enveloped brilliantly as a spectrum fed by an enlightened blend of instruments and groupings of musicians.
Luz stuns from the moment the shimmering glow shines upon "El Sueño De Adán." The ballad is swept into the emotional robes of singer Téka Penteriche, whose pith and intonation give the song a distinctive soul. The mood is enhanced by Adam Asarnov, on piano, and Muñoz, two crucial elements which add to the collective attainment.
Singer Magos Herrera shows off her depth and her ability to shed light on nuance on "Testamento/Mas Alla" which Muñoz wrote for his wife. It's turned into a loving testament not only by Herrera but also by the warm intonation of pianist Jonathan Dane and Muñoz's sensitive percussion.
The guitar has played an integral role in Latin American music, and its presence is both earthy and ethereal on "Vals De La Luz." Christopher Judge's tone is pure and his notes clean on acoustic guitar. His vocabulary is fermented by an interpretive zeal that takes the music into heady, absorbing realms, making this one of the top tracks on the CD.
Muñoz charms and stimulates on this beguiling album.
Track Listing: El Sueño de Adán; Invisible; Amarilis; Al Silencio; El Sendero de las Aves; Vals de la
Luz; Preludio; Testamento/Mas Alla; Entre El Mar y la Tristeza.
Personnel: Luis Muñoz: drums, percussion, background vocals, piano (2-6); Adam Asarnow: piano
(1-3, 6); George Friedenthal: piano (4- 8); Tom Etchart: acoustic bass; Jonothan Dane:
trumpet, cornet (2); Téka Penteriche: lead vocal (1, 4); Magos Herrera: lead vocal (8);
Bill Flores: pedal steel guitar (2); Laura Hackenstein: violin (3); Narciso Sotomayor:
acoustic guitar (3); Carlomagno Araya: drums (5); Ramses Araya: bata drums (5); Tom
Buckner: tenor sax (5); Christopher Judge: acoustic guitar (6, 8); Gilberto Gonzalez:
acoustic guitar (9); John Nathan: marimba (9).
Record Label: Pelin Music