Spellbinding Mirrors

Hector Zazou -  In the House of Mirrors
Hector Zazou – In the House of Mirrors
Hector Zazou

In the House of Mirrors (Crammed Discs, 2008)

French composer Hector Zazou died shortly after I received his latest CD, In the House of Mirrors. His death shocked the world music scene, specially in France. Zazou was a prolific artist who explored many types of music, ranging from world music to ambient and classical. In the House of Mirrors blends ambient electronica with acoustic instruments from various cultures.

The CD, recorded in Mumbai (Bombay), brought together Zazou and Swara, a group formed by  virtuoso musicians Toir Kuziyev (Uzbekistan) on oud and tambur, and Milind Raykar (India) on violin and Manis Pingle (India) on “Indian slide guitar.” In the House of Mirrors also includes guests such as Spanish piper Carlos Núñez, Nils Petter Molvaer on trumpet, Diego Amador on [wiki:flamenco] piano, Hurshid Oripov on ney, Hungarian Zoltan Lantos on violin and Indian flute player Ronu Mjumdar.

The mesmerizing feel throughout the album is achieved with the use of cinematic electronic and acoustic drones combined with spellbinding guitar, violin, trumpet and oud melodies. The music should appeal to the fans of atmospheric recordings, such as the ones released by ECM recordings. “The sounds of the musicians are taken to a sort of “hall of mirrors”, explained Zazou about the new recording, “where, just like in Orson Welles’ movie “The Lady of Shanghai”, the sound is reflected from one note to another forming a sort of dune that pushes the musicians to dive under the surface, directly towards the heart of sound”. 

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Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for TelevisiĆ³n EspaƱola (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.


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