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Saffron & Silk

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Album Review

Born and raised in Germany, guitarist and ethnic fusion master Santoo Govi named his fourth Higher Octave release, Saffron & Silk, as an ode to his longtime affinity for Eastern music, which he first cultivated during a nine-year stay in India. But as the tracks unfold, the listener feels as though the musical journey is going to many different places, including a soulful stop in "Marrakesh," which includes passages from many of Govi's more exotic stringed instruments, and the "Road to Istanbul," where the oud and steel strings lead and the sitar follows. The opener, "Call of the East," sets the itinerary by fusing traces of Govi's early background as an electric rock guitarist with his later love for the melodic possibilities of the flamenco guitar, swirled in an ambient sitar harmony. He delves into the heart of Latin America for the folksy "Carioca Cat" (named after the cool "screech" at the end of some of the lower-toned 12-string lines) and playful flamenco-tinged "Danza del Corazon." Despite all of the exotic rhythms in his music, Govi's overall approach seems designed to soothe and inspire the soul and take you at least in spirit to the paradise surroundings of his digs in Maui, where he's lived for the last ten years.


Genre: New Age

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

This California-based guitarist was actually born in Germany. His inspiration and style are similar to that of another German immigrant, Deuter, who co-produced and performed on Govi's debut album Sky High. Like Deuter, Govi spent a number of years living and studying in India, where he added sitar to his vocabulary of acoustic and electric guitars, mandola, and cello.Govi's music gained in popularity in the 1990s, with the expansion of peoples awareness of world music and a renewed passion for flamenco,...
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Saffron & Silk, Govi
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