Domo Records has presented us with some excellent and well
known artists and groups over the last 10 years. Outstanding in their collection is Kitaro,
best known for their “Silk Road” musical
background for the for the long running Japanese production. However, they have many artists they are
proud of, and this compilation gives us a sampling of the best and brightest of
this recording label.
There are 16 tracks on this CD. The inside booklet does list the previous
CD’s that include the works presented.
The opening track is Daichi by Kitaro which sets the
standard of excellence which Domo has established for this CD. A full orchestral piece, this is oriental in
feel, but with strong melody, powerful beat, yet is not pompous or
overbearing. It gives a feeling of
stamina, as Kitaro has been over the
The Yoshida Brothers present us with a very traditional
Japanese piece Starting on a Journey, gently orchestrated to fill the piece
delightfully. They add piano and
violins, which gives this an
“East Meets West” play that is as strong as the Kitaro
piece, yet subtle at the same time. And
excellent introduction to the young Japanese sensation Yoshida Brothers if you
have never heard them before.
Stephen DeRuby presents us with Desire, a piece from his CD
Sacred Spaces. A more subtle work, with
wind instruments, a very oriental feel, but filled with lovely guitar
work. A more spiritual work than the
previous tracks, but Mr. DeRuby does present us with an excellent
representation of his style of music.
Sleeping Woman is the track by Luis Perez which again is
very exotic in flavor, as is most of Domo’s productions. This piece is flute with a very Mexican or
traditional South American accompaniment.
This is over an orchestral backfill, giving it strength yet retaining
its delicate musical quality. A very
good choice for an introduction to Mr. Perez and his style of music.
Luis Villegas track New Moon begins with a feeling of a
summer evening and breaks into some spectacular Latin guitar work. This track is dynamic, offering a powerful
first look at this Internationally known artist if you have never heard him
before. This piece will move you out of
your seat to dance across the floor.
Grammy nominee Nawang Khechog, a Tibetan composer and
musician, gives us the light and airy Peace Through Kindness, accompanied by
Tibetan chanters. A lovely, delightful
work to introduce many new listeners to this highly respected World musician.
Simply listed as Sicilienne, this track introduces us to a
piano and violin composition from the "Classics for the Heart” CD. This is a classic, to be sure, as the melody
will stick in your mind as does the romantic blending of the piano and
violin. The composition is very
classical, reminiscent of Debussy or David Lanz.
Randy Armstrong provides us with a powerful guitar piece
called Fisherman’s Cancion. Randy is
easily recognized for his work on the PBS production Dinner on the Diner, and
this piece is a very good representation of the artists abilities in both the
guitar as well as composition.
A more brooding piece, Dark Passage by Dave Eggar is another
piano piece that gives us pause for contemplation. You may be more familiar with this artist
from his works with Ornette Coleman and Bobby McFerrin amongst others. This is
a lovely offering and one that will peak your interest in this piano artist.
Agatsuma is represented by his piece A Paper in the Air, a
strong, subtle work showing off the skills of the artist with the
Tsugaru-Shamisen. This piece is one of
his gentler works, but is a good representation of the style of music Agatsuma
is known for.
We return to the Spanish flavor with Mediterranean Sunrise
by Benedetti & Svoboda, with romantic guitars serenading the listener. These two gentlemen have been playing
together for more than fifteen years, and it shows in the blending of the
guitars to create a well defined and passionate style. If this is the first time you are hearing
these musicians, you will be enchanted by their Spanish rhythms and provocative
The talented skills of Yu-Xiao Guang on the Chinese huquin
is featured on the track Flying Celestial Nymphs. The huquin is most closely related to a
violin than any other Western instrument, and can produce the same subtleties
and nuances as the well played violin can.
This is a soft, romantic piece, traditional Chinese in style, and again,
a very good representation of the artist and his skills.
Sympathy by Toshiyuka Honda is a lighter piano piece which
is expertly executed amongst violins.
This is a very short piece but it gives you a delicious taste of the
artists ability and makes you hungry for more.
Alex Wurman’s jazzy blues piece Cautionary Tale is a hot
little number that fills your imagination with a smokey bar, a jazz quartet and
a hot night in the city. This is because
Mr. Wurman is probably better known for his film scores than anything
else. Play it to the Bone, Confessions
of a Dangerous Mind and Hollywood Homicide are just a few of his most recent
works. This offering gives the listener
a good feel for Mr. Wurman’s style and abilities.
The last two tracks are all Kitaro. The track Planet is very light, classical in
feeling, contemplative and serene.
Kitaro has many styles and this highlights yet another facet of Kitaro’s
The final track Theme for Earthdance is a brand new,
previously unreleased piece and is considered a “bonus track” for this CD. Fans of Kitaro will want to add this to their
collection. This is a very romantic,
melodic work, almost dancing in the air on its own. It has a waltz beat to it, and will have you
dancing around your living room. This is
a lovely ending to this compilation.
Overall, this is a grand presentation of the artists on the
Domo label, showing the strengths of their performers and giving new listeners
to this label a great show and starting point for the appreciation of the
artists. I recommend this to anyone who
loves a good collection of extraordinary musical artists and as a first rate
introduction to Domo Records if you have never heard their offerings before.
by MA Foster