Solar is a group of musicians with great musical depth and vision. Suns Of Cosmic Consciousness features originals as well as time honored classics. When listening to this trio, one would swear that there were more instruments taking part in their musical journeys. The music is vibrant, exciting, and well executed.
Rhythm and drive abounds on the fast paced Samba De Aztac. Reminiscent of Chick Corea at his best, the trio digs into the melody with gusto and determination. Yamin's lyrical piano sets the stage for the rest of the trio to follow. Demos is as solid as can be throughout. Bernstein's Haden like drive is much appreciated.
Charles Mingus originally recorded Remember Rockefeller At Attica on his classic Atlantic release Changes One. Solar take the melody and twist it every which way resulting in an orgy of sonic delight. Right away it is evident how well the trio's cohesiveness pays off. They play like a well oiled machine with passion to burn.
In, Out is a sweet melody featuring the softer side of the trio. Bernstein's fingers cry on the strings. Demos's sensitive brush work as well as Yamin's subdued piano bring this all too short number to a peaceful close.
The bands treatment of Monk's Rhythm-A-Ning is a dark and cautious exploration with rolling drum swirls and Yamin's possessed keyboard work. Always aware of the melodic intensity that was there when originally composed, everyone has a hand at exploring the different regions, and crevices. It's a joy to listen to this reworked version because the group is having a great time playing as a unit as well as bouncing ideas off one another.
Yamin's sensitive reading of Kurt Weill's poignant piece September Song illustrates how in touch he is with his creative side. Each note caressed gently, playing in and around the note. The atmosphere builds into an exercise of free form playing while the melody is always close at hand. Beautiful support from the rest of the band.
Love In Outer Space is one of those "feel good" kind of tunes that was written by Sun Ra. One feels a sense of spiritual reawakening and refreshment after just one listen. If there was one word to describe this piece it would be freedom. Freedom to move. Freedom to express, and Freedom to love. Sun Ra left us a great legacy of music and it is fitting that Solar would end the journey with this piece of music.
From beginning to end, Suns Of Cosmic Consciousness is a satisfying listen on many levels. Each musician is able to not only get into the spirit of each selection but even more so, their ability to perform as a group speaks volumes in relation to what the future holds. Solar have the potential to continue to expand their ideas in future releases.