I do own few percussion CDs, all with very good recordings. However, percussion music has great dynamic and it is not easy to finish listening all the tracks at one goal, you cannot really ‘sit back and relax’ that kind of thing. Rhythmize Heartstrings is however a CD with good recordings and fairly ‘easy’ listening.
The production of this XRCD2 disc is in Japan, but the recordings were done in China. Other than using the many types of Chinese and Western percussion instruments, the music arrangement also deployed many other musical instruments.
What I found interesting about this recording is the refreshing music composition and arrangements. The music are not so heavy and you can somehow sit back and relax enjoying the music.
In particular I like the following three tracks:
“Earth and Sunshine”: The piano and the bell created a grand soundstage, as if you are having a good bird eye view of grand scenery on a hill top. The music is about the first light of the world, the beginning of creation.
I was laughing away when listening to the track “The Hare and the Tortoise”. A simple instrumentation combination, with xylophone represent the hare motive, and the elegant English horn representing the steady tortoise. This familiar tale is very aptly represented, humorous and amusing.
In “Cavalry in Desert” the trumpet brings out the cavalry motive. The music is agile and lively. In this arrangement there are also other instruments like drum, bell etc. Recording wise not an easy task due to the high dynamic. Therefore this is a good piece to test audiophile equipment.
In this album every percussion solo instrument is accompanied by at a non-percussion instrument. In the track “War Drums in Red Cliff” we have pipa; in “A Glass of Mellow Wine” there is pan-pipes; “Earth and Sunshine” the piano; “The Hare and the Tortoise” the English horn; “Balloon Flower” the vertical flute; “Cavalry in Desert” the tumpet; “Ksana Namas” the Chinese zither; “Brown Courser” the Mongolian string instrument; “Gorgeous Rosy Clouds” the Chinese flute; and “Sing for Boundless Travelling” the female focal.
Audiophiles are unlikely to be disappointed with this recording. The only thing about the album is there are no detail description of the percussion instrument at the respective colour photos presented in the CD booklet and so I cannot figure out the name of each instrument.