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Published on Nov 12, 2015
Eliyahu Hanavi Alex Lubet Alex Lubet, soprano ukulele; Maja Radovanlija, prepared classical guitar
Transporting the listener to a mysterious and enthralling sonic world, composers and guitarists Alex Lubet and Maja Radovanlija present their debut release on Big Round Records, THE ENCHANTED GUITAR FOREST, which captures the duo’s Eastern European, specifically Jewish and Balkan, heritage. Influenced by the composition and playing styles of blues and jazz as well as world and classical music, Lubet and Radovanlija deliver their signature approach of using traditional melodies combined with improvisation, producing a sound driven lyrically and rhythmically, out of which flows interwoven harmonic structures. Many of the solo and duo works featured on the album use thematic material of traditional songs from Jewish and Eastern European folk music, including Macedonian Dream, inspired by a Macedonian tune which uses a traditional Balkan meter of 7/8 (3+2+2); and Los Bilbilicos (“The Nightingales”), a set of variations which Radovanlija composed after an old Sephardic song about longing for lost love. Lubet’s Ein Keiloheinu uses the opening passage from Julius Freudenthal’s well-known synagogue hymn, transforming it through sections of improvisation and re-harmonization. Other pieces take inspiration and material from classical music such as Lubet’s Aria, based on Puccini’s famous “O mio babbino caro” from his opera Gianni Schicchi.