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Marilyn Mazur: Celestial Circle

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Paced by the gallant, round piano of John Taylor, the austere mezzo-soprano of Josefine Cronholm and Anders Jormin’s space-carving bass, percussionist-composer Marilyn Mazur explores diverse territory on these pellucid 14 tracks. Each member of the band-also called Celestial Circle, and making its recorded debut here-contributes, and there’s no apparent leader. This is a no-drama disc; imminence is paramount. Only as the music unfolds does the versatility of the players become clear.

While most tracks feel northern European, others, like “Drumrite” and “Antilope Arabesque,” conjure Arabia, even a Buddhist shrine. The former cut is a remarkable piece of world music twining Cronholm and Mazur’s voices in symmetry with Jormin and Mazur’s percussion. “Drumrite” is where the group breaks out; there’s heat, sparked by Mazur’s most torrid beats. The beautiful, appropriately loping “Antilope” is deliberate and haunting. Absorbing it is to enter a place dedicated to quickening the mind.

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