A review of Al Di Meola’s Elysium

With more than four decades in music, three gold albums, and more than six million record sales worldwide, Al Di Meola is ready for his next success with Elysium.

The album consists of 14 original tracks with Di Meola accompanied by guests such a Philippe Saisse and Mario Parmisano on keyboards, Rhani Krija on percussion, and Peter Kaszas on drums.

Al Di Meola can be heard blending the sounds of his Conde Hermanos acoustic prototype model with his ’71 Les Paul electric throughout the songs on Elysium, bringing two usually distinct guitar styles – a sometimes hard rock and sometimes classically romantic – together.

Elysium opens with “Adour,” in which Di Meola accompanies an electric guitar melody with acoustic guitar. “Babylon” has a ostinato part over which Di Meola something action through a fusion-influenced melody, definitely our favorite on the project. “Purple and Gold” is somewhat cinematic in nature, but something nonetheless fitting with the other tunes on the project.

The title track, “Elysium” has a lighter feel to it and a melody that transports you from where ever you might be listening to an intimate sonic landscape. “Amanjena” begins with a slow and something introduction before delving into a full-something with Di Meola improvising over the track on electric. The album closes with the mysterious and vibraphone driven “La Lluvia”.

The project is definitely one that will be undoubtedly poured over by guitarists and fans of Di Meola.

Al Di Meola has worked with Return to Forever, Rite of Strings, his Guitar Trio along with John McLaughlin and Paco Lucia, and more. He has more than 20 albums as a leader and is world renowned for his blending of world and Latin musics with jazz. He attended Berklee College of Music and soon joined Chick Corea’s fusion group Return to Forever at the age of 19. He will be honored with the 22nd Miles Davis Award at the Montreal Jazz Festival this summer (2015).

Get Elysium on Amazon.

Title: Elysium
Artist: Al Di Meola
Date: June 09, 2015
Genre: Jazz, Jazz Fusion
Label: inakustik Label Group

Tracks:

01 Adour
02 Cascade
03 Babylon
04 Purple and Gold
05 Esmeralda
06 Elysium
07 Amanjena
08 Sierra
09 Etcetera in E Major (Intro)
10 Etcetera in E Major
11 Tangier
12 Stephanie
13 Monsters
14 La Lluvia

Get Elysium on Amazon.

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Published on: August 19, 2015

Filled Under: Reviews

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