Jimmy Lopez, Peru Negro; Synesthesie; Lord of the Air; America Salvaje - album review

Download: Lord of the Air; America Salvaje

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Young Peruvian composer Jimmy Lopez draws diversely on Latin American inspiration in this series of premiere recordings, with “America Salvaje” featuring the eerie strains of the pututos, native ceremonial wind instruments, while the Afro-Peruvian celebration “Peru Negro” evokes something of the primitive-Modernist spirit of Silvestre Revueltas’s Night of the Maya soundtrack.

The short suite “Synesthesie” seeks to represent the five senses, building in depth and complexity from the drum barrage of “Toucher” to the riotous sensual turmoil of “Vision”; but the most impressive piece here is “Lord of the Air”, a cello concerto inspired by the Andean condor.

It opens in urgent but unstable manner, with gifted cellist Jesus Castro-Balbi and the Norwegian Radio Orchestra swapping phrases and flourishes, until a pulsing orchestral ostinato aids lift-off.