MICHAEL DRAKE King of Hearts, Norwich


> King of Hearts, Norwich

The chance to be at least artistically warmed with a potentially hot programme of 17th century Spanish dance music was not to be passed up.

Calling themselves Eclipse and dressed the part, the quartet settled to a weaving and mellow mix for harp, theorbo and guitar. It was the start of a journey of discovery in educational music of the time rather than the modern Flamenco image of the country.

Drums set complicated rhythmic patterns in Gallardas with Xacaras, being based on a gentle but always mobile harp tune full of colour. All the music was improvised “mood” music. The group was certainly in a good mood for the guitar melody of Zarambeques embellished by the harp – though here the tonality of the added bass recorder was not always compatible.

The whirling rhythm of the tarantella was effective as a climax to the whole.

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Eclipse had a musical gentility to go with their skills. A real winter warmer.

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