Release Date: July 17, 2020
Label: Sonic Dreams
The opener is the moving title track. It set the table for me so I added it to my NAMR Spotify Playlist. It captures your attention and imagination rather quickly. Right at the outset, I felt a calmness and satisfaction listening to Kaveh’s smooth and rhythmic command of the piano.
The next track “Shades of Light” offers some diversity to the listener with a change in direction. What you get is some very nice sax added to the piano playing and the quiet storm of smooth jazz to sweep you away. The combination of new age and jazz is a splendid mixture that would please any discerning listener.
“Sunset Sparrows” is yet another change of course in the music with some influences from Kaveh’s country Iran. What you will hear is the kaval, which is a chromatic end-blown flute traditionally played throughout the Balkans and Anatolia. You will immediately notice it as a flute but with a distinctly different sound.
As the music progresses it keeps changing my idea of what to classify it as. I think it is probably best to call it instrumental, contemporary, new age, jazz, and world. Or any combination thereof. For my ears and senses, this is a complete experience of diverse musicianship that I respect and appreciate. There is a high level of complexity with various sounds, effects, and instruments. “Infinite Horizon” is an excellent example of that. The different textures, colors, and moods intersect and explode into a celebration of varied beauty and sound. I was very impressed with what I heard.
The soprano saxophone of Farzin Farhadi adds another element of sophistication and richness to the exquisite piano playing of Kaveh. As the new age contemporary sounds morph into an infectious jazz direction, you become even more engrossed in the music and anticipate more of the same as the next track begins.
Spirit of Hope is everything it intends to be and much more. Whether you are being mesmerized by the culture of another country or the purity of the ivory keys with pristine new age there is a lot to like. There is the dreamy and mysterious with the combination of world instruments like on “Sacrifice of Soyembika.” There is consistency and always something to grab your attention and pull you into all the stories without words.
Spirit of Hope is more than I could have ever expected from a piano-based project. The core instrument is the keys and everything else that becomes a factor to create the mood of each track is marvelous creativity and imagination on display. I loved it all from start to finish.
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
Monday, July 13, 2020