Eduardo Niebla: My Gypsy Waltz – review


Flamenco has been the starting point for a wide variety of impressive experiments, from the flamenco-jazz collaborations of Paco de Lucia with John McLaughlin and Larry Coryell through to the Ojos de Brujo's fusion of rapid-fire guitar work with anything from hip-hop and funk to Cuban and Indian influences. Eduardo Niebla's approach lies somewhere between the two. Now based in Yorkshire, he's a flamenco-jazz guitarist who spent his childhood "growing up with the Gypsies on the outskirts of Girona, Spain" (which forgives what might otherwise be a decidedly naff cover photo of him holding a guitar while leading horses and a caravan), but is influenced by a variety of other global styles. His latest album demonstrates his fluid, technically brilliant guitar work in a variety of settings, with backing from five musicians, including tabla player Dharmesh Parmar and Indian violinist Jyotsna Srikanth, and the standout track is the 18-minute India, a series of "meditations" on poverty and resilience, in which lyrical, drifting guitar passages are matched against rousing interplay with Srikanth's violin. Other tracks are more varied. Phoenix sounds like a film score, the exuberant title track includes an unnecessary school choir, while the thoughtful and lyrical Rosie is another reminder of Niebla's exquisite guitar work.


Robin Denselow

The GuardianTramp

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