11 Songs, 58 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Awash in dark romantic flavor and contrapuntal orchestration, Al Di Meola’s Opus is a veritable symphony for layered acoustic guitars, with a good deal of percussion in the mix as well. Other textures emerge: lush orchestral sounds on “Ava’s Dream Sequence Lullaby,” ethereal electric guitar on “Broken Heart” and “Rebels,” organ and other sonorities on “Escapado.” But the focal point is Di Meola’s ornate acoustic handiwork, tinged with tango and other South American influences, stirringly virtuosic but not without sensitivity and melodic warmth.

Mastered for iTunes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Awash in dark romantic flavor and contrapuntal orchestration, Al Di Meola’s Opus is a veritable symphony for layered acoustic guitars, with a good deal of percussion in the mix as well. Other textures emerge: lush orchestral sounds on “Ava’s Dream Sequence Lullaby,” ethereal electric guitar on “Broken Heart” and “Rebels,” organ and other sonorities on “Escapado.” But the focal point is Di Meola’s ornate acoustic handiwork, tinged with tango and other South American influences, stirringly virtuosic but not without sensitivity and melodic warmth.

Mastered for iTunes
TITLE TIME

Ratings and Reviews

4.6 out of 5

9 Ratings
9 Ratings

This is only based on the samples

Keaggy_Head

I like what I'm hearing so far in the 1:30 samples of each track. I have one thought though. I'm not against Al's modern style so I'm not an old school fusion head. But consider this. Al has said in recent interviews he finds a rythm and an arppegio pattern before he ever finds a melody. Unforunately for this reason, his music struggles sometimes to find a soul as it's foundation is a purely intellectual basis. Look at the last two tracks on Electric Rendesvous or the last song on Kiss My Ax. Those are so beautiful and so purely melodic pieces. I wish Al would get out of his creative rut. I'll keep buying his music regardless. I'm a hard core fan.

Opus

corangelo1

To the gentlemen who judged the CD on only hearing samples.
I think you need to hear the whole record first!
By the way writing arpeggios first and or the harmony first has always from record one been the way I wrote. A melody without harmony is a strange way to write for me! It’s just now there’s even more melody and composition! Check out the whole record! Enjoy:)

Al's Finest Album in many years

jamesmccurdy1

Opus is an incredible album. It is a spine-chilling emotionally charged collection of magical musical mastery from a guitar virtuoso. Al can clearly lay claim to his own genre with this release. Touching on all the genres Al is famous for, from Latin to Jazz to Classical and even Rock, this multi-faceted and complex musical journey is an incredible experience.

From the incredibly haunting and beautiful multi-part 10 minute masterpiece of 'Ava's Dream Sequence Lullaby' to the gorgeous harmonic improvisations of 'Broken Heart,' Opus showcases what is clearly, in my opinion, Al's greatest works to date.

The music has emotional exuberance that reaches back to his days with Cielo e Terra, and a technical brilliance that evokes his work on Kiss My Axe and Electric Rendezvous. For the first time in some years, he's broken through and produced wholly original and fresh compositions which showcase his technical genius but make it accessible and listenable.

From the genius of inspiration from Led Zeppelin in 'Nortorious' and its pouncing rhythm, to the incredible inspiration and beautiful electric guitar solo in 'Broken Heart' lead you down a musical path that constantly makes you want to find the next exciting new sound and feeling.

If I could wear out an mp3, I'm wearing out Opus. It's a joyous musical ride. Don't miss out.

About Al Di Meola

Guitarist Al Di Meola first rose to prominence as a blazing jazz fusion artist before his playing matured and he began to conquer other styles, such as acoustic Latin music. Born on July 22, 1954 in Jersey City, New Jersey, Di Meola briefly studied at the Berklee College of Music in Boston during the early '70s before accepting a job replacing guitarist Bill Connors in fusion trailblazers Return to Forever (a group that also included monster instrumentalists keyboardist Chick Corea, bassist Stanley Clarke, and drummer Lenny White) in 1974. It was with Di Meola that Return to Forever enjoyed their greatest commercial success, as such releases as 1974's Where Have I Known Before, 1975's No Mystery, and 1976's Romantic Warrior cracked the U.S. Top 40 before Di Meola jumped ship to launch a solo career.

What followed remains some of the finest jazz fusion guitar-based recordings ever: 1976's Land of the Midnight Sun, 1977's Elegant Gypsy (which would eventually earn gold certification in the U.S.), and Casino, plus 1979's Splendido Hotel. Di Meola then united with fellow guitar greats John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucía for 1980's Friday Night in San Francisco. Throughout the '80s and '90s, he racked up numerous accolades (including earning yearly top honors in Guitar Player magazine polls), kept on issuing solo releases on a regular basis, and played with others, including releases by Stomu Yamashta, Paul Simon, Stanley Jordan, and David Matthews, as well as further work with such former bandmates as Corea, Clarke, de Lucía, and McLaughlin.

During the '90s, Di Meola turned his back almost entirely on fusion to concentrate more on acoustic-based world music, as evidenced by such releases as World Sinfonia, Di Meola Plays Piazzolla, and Heart of the Immigrants, among others. During the 2000s, Di Meola continued this eclectic approach with releases like 2003's Revisited, 2006's Consequence of Chaos, 2007's Diabolic Inventions and Seduction for Solo Guitar, Vol. 1: Music of Astor Piazzolla, and 2008's live album He and Carmen with flutist Eszter Horgas. In 2011, Di Meola delivered the Latin and world music-infused studio album Pursuit of Radical Rhapsody, featuring bassist Charlie Haden and Cuban pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba.

The lushly textured fusion effort Elysium followed in 2015. Two years later, Di Meola delivered the concert album Morocco Fantasia, recorded live at the Mawazine Festival in Rabat, Morocco. Along with Di Meola's band, the show featured guest appearances by Moroccan musicians oud player Said Chraibi, violinist Abdellah Meri, and percussionist Tarik Ben Ali. In 2018, he delivered Opus, which featured contributions from Cuban-born pianist Kemuel Roig. ~ Greg Prato

HOMETOWN
Jersey City, NJ
GENRE
Jazz
BORN
July 22, 1954

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