Home Archive New Music: David Virelles, Gnosis (ECM)

New Music: David Virelles, Gnosis (ECM)


RELEASE DATE: September 15, 2017

David Virelles: piano, marímbula, vocals; Román Díaz: lead vocals and percussion (bonkó enchemiyá, ekón, nkomos, erikundi, itones, nkaniká, marímbula, claves, mayohuacán, pilón, carapacho de jicotea, coconut shells); Allison Loggins-Hull: piccolo, flute; Rane Moore: clarinet, bass clarinet;

Adam Cruz: percussion (steel pan, claves); Alex Lipowski: percussion (orchestral bass drum, temple blocks, bongos, gong); Matthew Gold: percussion (marimba, glockenspiel); Mauricio Herrera: percussion (ekón, nkomos, erikundi, claves); Thomas Morgan: double bass; Yunior Lopez: viola;

Christine Chen, Samuel DeCaprio: violoncello; Melvis Santa, Mauricio Herrera: vocals

In this vivid and exciting project, the Santiago-raised and New York-based pianist-composer David Virelles looks towards one melting pot from the vantage point of another. A far-reaching work with deep cultural roots, Gnosis speaks of transculturation and traditions, and of the complex tapestry of Cuba’s music – the sacred, the secular, and the ritualistic – but the work’s shapes and forms could only have been created by a gifted contemporary player thoroughly versed in the art of the improvisers. Strings, woodwinds and percussion all have their roles to play in Gnosis, viewed by Virelles as “several families functioning within one unit: this dynamic symbolizes multicultural interaction.” Virelles’ responsive piano and the vocals and percussion of Román Díaz, a profound figure in the transmission of Afro-Cuban musical history, are at the center of the action. Gnosis was recorded at New York’s Avatar Studios in May 2016 and produced by Manfred Eicher.

Artist Website: http://davidvirelles.com

A graduate of Empire State College with a dual major in journalism and Latin American studies, Tomas Peña has spent years applying his knowledge and writing skills to the promotion of great musicians. A specialist in the crossroads between jazz and Latin music, Peña has written extensively on the subject.


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