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CD REVIEW - Temple of the Drum


Mike Dec 17, 2011 3:35 AM
Posted in group: alt.pagan.magick
Temple of the Drum CD  by  Dragon Ritual Drummers        © 2011  !2 Tracks
$20.00 (U.S.)
Total Running Time:        55:34

Gateway                02:33                Marakesh                                01:22
Hot Toddy                04:23                Bombay Bollywood Bop                04:53
Fanga                        04:29                Shaharazad                                03:51
Afri Afrique                06:10                Brazil                                        05:52
Tuatha de dannan        06:08                Dance of the Thunder Serpent        01:50
Guinea                        04:16                Wake the Dragon                        09:39

I am extremely grateful that a friend pointed me in the direction of
Dragon Ritual Drummers a few years ago.  In the intervening years I
have had the pleasure and opportunity to receive and review several of
their releases and I have yet to be disappointed by the quality of the
performances and production values.  These folks know how to use their
instruments to attain the best possible results.

On a personal note, my one regret is that every time I have hoped to
have time to get together with them, or attend a performance,
something has inevitably cropped up which prevented me from doing so.
Ah, well...next year for sure.

Almost all of their music is written by members of the group (they do
a few traditional songs to add a little extra flavor and variety to
what they do – “Fanga” and “Shaharazad” are examples on this disk).
Perhaps the most striking thing about their performances is that they
don't use “studio tricks” to make their recordings (no sampling from
other sources, no instrumental enhancements of any sorts).  What you
hear is all natural, although it is possible that the vocals on
“Fanga” may have been tweaked a bit.

If you are one of those individuals who, like I was, feels that “A
drumming CD isn't for me,” I humbly suggest that you put aside  your
preconceptions and sit back when you have some time and be prepared to
change your mind.  First of all, their work (and this one as well) is
much more than drumming and other percussion instruments.  Okay,
granted, the percussion instruments dominate, but they do not
overwhelm.

I was so reluctant to deal with “ a drumming CD” at the beginning that
I almost turned down the opportunity to do a review, but then I
remembered the instruction I got from  one of my early magical
instructors:  “You should try all things three times   - once to see
if you like it, a second time to see if you decided in haste, and a
third time to see if you tire of it quickly.

I am not personally into dance (having absolutely no sense of rhythm),
but there is a compelling force behind the music which forces even me
to tap my feet and bounce my legs as I listen.  At the same time,
there are passages and sequences which encourage the listener to relax
and let go of any sense of urgency.  While that isn't terribly hard to
do with separate songs, to find that within the same song is a
pleasant surprise.

Looking for a CD with a lot of potential?  Something that can lead you
from African tribal dance to the swaying of a Moroccan belly dance?
And which, along the way will make a stop on the Indian sub-
continent?  Look no further.  Add this CD to your collection and you
won't regret it.