Many years ago, certainly more than I would care to remember, I came across an album in a second-hand shop called The Renaissance of the Celtic Harp by Alan Stivell. I played it to death and still occasionally give it a spin. For years, I thought I was the only person in the world who knew about this record, so it is gratifying to read that the album also profoundly affected Andreas Vollenweider.
SlowFlow and Dancer blends the same Celtic and Breton harp traditions with contemporary music into something not quite a folk record, not precisely classical and perhaps not even what we broadly call world music, but a subtle blend of all three.
It is a deft blend of past and present, with cool electric guitars spiralling through folk sounds and contemporary beats leading a dance for primal sounds to return to the world. It is also happy to hop genres or perhaps even create its own at a precise point in a complex but satisfying Venn Diagram. But more than that, these gorgeous instrumental pieces are strikingly original, wonderfully cinematic, and, this should go without saying really, a worthy addition to the record collection of any discerning music fan.