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Hans Christian — Phantoms
(El Paraiso CDGLP058, 1994, CD)

by Mike Ohman, Published 1994-10-01

Phantoms Cover artUnlike Sebastian Hardie, Hans Christian is not a band, it's a person. Actually, sort of a one-man band: Christian plays almost all the instruments, though he has a bit of outside help from percussionist John Loose on three tracks. Christian plays cello, bass, guitars, keyboards, percussion and didjeridu (an Australian aboriginal instrument, the source of the odd droning sound on many of these tracks). Christian's music seems to have found the middle ground between contemporary synthesists like Matthias Thurow and more acoustically-based space-music like Popol Vuh. Most of the music is a vehicle for guitar and cello solos over a bed of synthesizers and percussion (no kit-drums). The multi-tracked cello melodies as on "Backwards (With My Eyes Closed)" are exceptionally fresh. Relying not so much on memorable melodies as interesting rhythmic and musical textures created by the bed of synthesizers and myriad percussion. This disc could probably be found in the new-age section of your local record store, and while it's not as good as Popol Vuh or Matthias Thurow, it definitely transcends just about anything on the Windham Hill label.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 5, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): Hans Christian

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