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Lost In Paradise

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Album Review

Armik's lifelong love affair with the flamenco guitar began on his first visit to Spain at age 20, when he saw the legendary Paco de Lucia perform. Driven by a fire for the tradition that has defined his musical life ever since, the young musician immediately switched from his electric Gibson CS175, trading his Wes Montgomery licks for an in-depth journey to the heart of Spanish music. Launching his solo career with 1994's Rain Dancer — a Top Ten Billboard New Age hit, like his five subsequent releases — he drew upon his jazz roots and flamenco passions to create a revolutionary twist on the emerging nouveau flamenco sound. Armik's Bolero Records debut, Lost in Paradise, paints a lush landscape of a unique style he calls "gypsy jazz," joyfully blending classic elements of rhumba, cha-cha, bolero, jazz, and, taking a rhythmic sojourn down to Brazil, a bit of bossa nova. The bold, percussive opening rhumba track "Barcelona Sunsets" thrusts the listener full throttle into the raw, emotional power of the Armik experience; his powerful fingerstyling is enhanced by a lively piano harmony. This is balanced by the gentle intimacy of the title track, a slow rhumba featuring a dreamy, seductive guitar line. The snappy cha-cha-cha piece, "Golden Rule," features Armik's plucky strains over a spirited, rolling groove. After the romantic sizzle of "Bolero Passion" (parts of which feature a harp like guitar sound), the fast rhumba "Almeria" brings back the fire for an aggressive, percussion-dense jam session. The Fender Rhodes-enhanced "Gypsy Love" demonstrates the true fusion that defines Armik's style, a soul-jazz meets flamenco jam that almost singlehandedly creates a new genre.


Genre: New Age

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

New flamenco guitarist Armik displayed an interest in and passion for music while still a young child. When he was just seven years old, he pawned his watch for a classical guitar, which he hid and practiced on in the basement. Formal music lessons followed and Armik completed the Rudolph Solphege program in two years; at 12, he was a professional recording artist. While his early career focused mostly on jazz, Armik discovered the beauty and passion of flamenco while visiting and studying in Spain...
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Lost In Paradise, Armik
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