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Dave Eggar: Left of Blue

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Dave Eggar has played cello or piano with a dizzying array of artists, including Alice Cooper, Ornette Coleman, John Denver, Bobby McFerrin, Yo-Yo Ma and the Flux Quartet that he cofounded. Left of Blue, his new album, is not quite so diverse; mostly playing cello, Eggar either unspools big, sighing, romantic melodies or explores the varied possibilities of overdubbing himself in more enigmatic, less melodic contexts.

The melodies have more than a touch of the New Age, and they might sound banal if the decisive, seductive Brazilian-style percussion of Iko Iko did not underpin them so frequently. Eggar presents his melodies imaginatively; on “Sao Bento,” flute chirping (evidently electronic) tugs a loping groove into place before Eggar enters with the theme, while “Dream in 4D” starts out in Eggar’s high tessitura and works its way down. The aforementioned solo tracks, like the stabs into an electronic haze on “Left of Center” and the nasty rhythmic snap of “Elusive Space,” also shake things up in between the poppier stuff. You still have to like those big melodies to like Left of Blue, but Eggar’s musical sophistication means you won’t feel guilty for it.