Luminous (Kufala, 2007)
I have to admit that I am sucker for electric violin. In my teenage years I fell in love with the violins of Jean Luc Ponty, Mahavishnu’s Jerry Goodman and Canadian progressive rock band FM, which featured electric violinists Nash the Slash and Ben Mink. Now, another electric violinists is luring me towards his musical charms. Chris Murphy has recorded a new album, Luminous, released by the always creative Kufala label.
It’s nearly impossible to categorize Chris Murphy music. On Luminous, his violin’s multiple incarnations sometimes sound like a scorching electric guitar, playing powerful instrumental rock and blues. Other times, Murphy’s violin soars and glides. He is comfortable playing a nostalgic and decadent waltz, while a little later treating the audience to cutting edge sounds, blending electric violin with electronica, psychedelia, avant-garde sounds and global beats.
The way Murphy achieves his fascinating sounds is by playing through a guitar amplifier, using various effects pedals, and a looping device that allows him to record himself in real time and overdub on top of it.