Omar Faruk Tekbilek - Beyond The Sky

Posted By MiOd On Friday, July 26, 2013 Under
"YOU KNOW, THE SKY HERE'S VERY STRANGE.
I OFTEN HAVE THE SENSATION WHEN I LOOK AT IT
THAT IT'S A SOLID THING UP THERE,
PROTECTING US FROM WHAT'S BEHIND."
Beyond the Sky is the third and finest of the collaborations between Turkish musician Omar Faruk Tekbilek and American guitarist, producer, and composer Brian Keane. This time out, they were inspired by Bernardo Bertolucci's film, The Sheltering Sky, based on Paul Bowles's novel. The arrangements are lusher, the moods are deeper, and Tekbilek's playing is more soulful than ever on this evocative and emotionally charged recording. Even more than Ryuichi Sakamoto's score for The Sheltering Sky does, this music calls up images of the North African desert, the spiraling minarets of Islamic mosques, and the heat of Middle Eastern sensuality. The two musicians are joined on this album by three other great players. Ara Dinkjian plays the oud and Arto Tuncboyaci is a master of Middle Eastern percussion. Both of these Armenian musicians were members of the group Night Ark. Also climbing aboard this caravan is Hassan Isikkut, a Turkish master of the kanun, a zither instrument. With Keane's subtle synthesizer arrangements, the music is exhilarating in its rhythmic intensity and virtuoso showmanship on a track such as "Imaginary Traveler," and searing and sensual in its spiritual passion on "Kolyami."

The soulful and spirited music of Beyond the Sky transports the listener to exotic regions of the Mediterranean, Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa. This collaboration brings back the symbiotic duo of Brian Keane and Omar Faruk Tekbilek, along with three other remarkable musicians. Together, they navigate a timeless path of mystery, excitement and energy, dense with the imagery of an ancient landscape.

The exceptional interaction of the musicians produce a spontaneous emotion, on both the original pieces they wrote for this recording, and the traditional Middle Eastern melodies they adapted. There is a good deal of improvisation, based on modal and rhythmic cues, updating standard tunes perhaps a thousand years old. Amidst the Middle Eastern harmonies, the listener catches whiffs of Moroccan and even Afro-Cuban styles. Beyond the Sky weaves a Middle Eastern fusion of cultural influences.

[01]. Beyond The Sky
[02]. Imaginary Traveler
[03]. Kolaymi
[04]. Bridge
[05]. Chargah Sirto
[06]. Your Love Is My Cure
[07]. Selement
[08]. Nighttime
[09]. Strange Little Corner
[10]. Siseler
[11]. Sweet Trouble
[12]. Al Fatiha

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