Oruc Guvenc and Tumata: Rivers of One: Traditional Sufi Healing Music

The intriguing notion of music for sanity’s sake lies at the heart of the tranquil new album called Rivers of One: Traditional Sufi Healing Music (Interworld 928; 44:52), by Oruc Guvens and Tumata. Dr. Guvenc is a Turkish musician, a clinical psychologist and music therapist, whose 1995 Interworld album Ocean of Remembrance introduced his gently entrancing music to the west. With a limited palette of textures-vocals, saz, ney, oud, water sounds and rebab-the group produces its disarmingly hypnotic effect. The music percolates softly, never rising above certain dynamic intensity levels, never actually wavering from a certain key and mode, defined as the “Rast makam.” (A “Makam” is a mode designated for specific healing effect.) The Rast makam “promotes inner comfort and deep relaxation, improves flexibility, and stimulates clear thought.”