Nikos Tsiachris, featuring Bandolero – Alcance (Galileo Music GMC075 CD, 2017)
Alcance is the remarkable debut album of Berlin-based Greek flamenco guitarist and composer Nikos Tsiachris. And indeed he plays real flamenco. Tsiachris delights the listener with a set that includes various flamenco palos (genres), including bulerias, garrotin, soleá, farruca, rumba, granaina and alegria.
The Spanish influence is clearly evident and it’s no wonder since Nikos Tsiachris invited Spain’s famed flamenco percussionist Bandolero (José Manuel Ruíz Motos). The Madrid-born Bandolero is one of the finest flamenco percussionists and has played with some flamenco’s biggest stars. He plays cajón and palmas (flamenco handclap percussion) and adds jaleos (shouts of encouragement) as well.
Alcance, nevertheless, is not a traditional album. Tsiachris surprises the listener with a brief injection of electric guitar on the opening track “Alcance”, a Middle Eastern trumpet introduction on “Lobna” and flamenco-jazz on “Baracoa.”
Spain-based Cuban bass player Yelsy Heredia also appears on the album, adding a succulent Cuban flavor that blends perfectly with Bandolero’s beats, Tsiachris’ guitar and a Latin jazz trumpet played by Martin Auer.
Also featured is Flamenco singer Juan Cárdenas on one track, trumpet player Milad Khawam, Tom Auffarth on percussion, Takashi Peterson on electric guitar, and Yorgos Dimitriadis on percussion.