Review: Trance’n’Dancin, Dush Perera, Jazz’n’Blues, January 2006

Given the jazz provenance of Kim Sanders, prior expectations that this is a jazz album may be justified. A few minutes listening to this CD however, will quickly put such suppositions to rest. From the very first track, the dominant flavour is clearly not just Middle Eastern but very particular strands within the complex heritage of Middle Eastern music and Balkan music.
A major part of this album is a modern interpretation of Traditional Mevlevi (Whirling Dervish) and Balkan dance music. Yet it loses none of the meditative and languid qualities of the original trance music, especially in the initial tracks, “Saba Saz Semaisi” and “Kimizi Gul”, but most apparent in Kim Sanders’ own composition “Saba Taksim”.
These pieces give way to the effervescence of “Solitary Circumambulation”, an acquired taste perhaps, being according to the liner notes, the world’s first composition for gaida, Hammond organ, and surdo, as well as the more buoyant “Kaval Taksim.” Yet, the real beauty of the album is the way that the bulk of the tracks achieve the near impossible feat of exuding a sound that is elegiac but at the same time spirited. The hauntingly beautiful “Gidemem Siraza ben” is almost heartrending in this technically masterful and emotionally uplifting intertwining of the plaintive with the exuberant. If there is a killer track in this album, this has to be it.
It is little wonder that the album announces itself as trance music-the listener is transported by this otherworldly music to a mysterious and rarefied atmosphere. Kim Sanders’ superb flute playing, with the Turkish ney and the Bulgarian wooden kaval goes a long way in creating the overarching mesmerising quality of this album.
Multi-instrumentalist Kim Sanders achieves total command over all his instruments and together with Peter Kennard has produced a masterful album which is an ideal vehicle for a breakthrough to a wider audience.

– Dush Perera, Jazz’n’Blues (Trance’n’Dancin was Jazz’n’BluesAlbum of the Month Jan 06)

Rating 4 stars (out of 5)