Monday, April 14, 2014

Magos & Limon Dawn Okeh 2014

Magos & Limon create a tapestry of both Latin and American standards with a global flair!
 
Brent Black / www.criticaljazz.com
 
A budding partnership that comes into full bloom with Dawn, Mexican born Magos Herrera and the Spanish Flamenco guitarist Javier Limon give credence to simplicity being the ultimate in sophistication. This is organic global fusion that embraces the authenticity of tunes such as "Sky Lark" and "Nature Boy"  while infusing a nuanced texture that pays homage to their own cultural heritage. Their combined musical pedigree is most impressive and includes collaborations with Aaron Goldberg, John Patitucci, and Wynton Marsalis.
 
The somewhat impressionistic mood embraces both rhythmic nuances and that space created between the notes. The emotive qualities brought forth include that of emptiness and melancholy that never slips into the tragic abysses of morose. While the standards are treated with great care, the originals including "My Love For You" could easily pass for something out of the Great American Songbook were it not for a fairly decent working knowledge of the catalog. An eclectic and incredibly engaging "Afro Blue" kicks off the organic Latin inspired mosaic but the inclusion of the Mexican folk song "La Llorona" adds that right amount of texture that will have Dawn cutting a lyrical path as wide as it is deep among listeners.
 
The work of guitarist Javier Limon is beyond reproach while the vocal artistry of Magos Herrera should have head snapping in her direction in short order. Herrera has been referred to as the Cassandra Wilson of Latin America, Herrera is way better. Normally releases of this nature are tired, predictable and uninspired. Dawn is just that, an inspired beginning for a new interpretation of classic standards. There is an ambient pulse, an ethereal heartbeat that is captivating...the release is simply magnificent.
Tracks: Afro Blue; Dawn; Skylark; La Martiniana; My Loe For You; Wild Is The Wind; O que tinha de ser; Tierra Movida; Oracao ao Tempo; La Llorona; Nature Boy; Blue In Green.
 
Available 6/3/14