How the West Was Lost, Vol. 2

How the West Was Lost, Vol. 2

by Peter Kater


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This flute/guitar/percussion ensemble featuring native American flutist R. Carlos Nakai plays with a magical folk/world palette - - and magic is at the heart of this album. Here you'll hear the atmospheres of shape shifters and the shadows of ancient dances. Gates of transformation, firelit caves, and manic antelopean dances are a few of the shamanic experiences captured by the trio. Guitarist William Eaton brings a robust range to the album with his unique hand-built stringed instruments: the 26-string guitar, the lyraharp guitar, and the spiral clef guitar. Eaton's creations color the music with soulful depths, complex overtones, and a springy freshness - - plus, he extends their effects by using synthesized sounds. (What Orpheus would have given for the echoing harp in "Arriving at Now.") Nakai's flute seems to pick up the torch of the searcher, while his shrill eagle bone whistle sounds an alarm. Percussionist Will Clipman coaxes many voices from his world percussion instruments; the heart-chamber chortles of the gourd water drum are especially expressive. "Thirteen Crows," a duet with flute and beating gourd drum, ends the album on a note of suspense, but nary one black feather. RED WIND is evocatively unique, yet extremely easy to listen to.

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