World music, hand drumming, fascinating rhythms and beats galore, are presented in fine form on this enticing recording. Hands On'Semble is a contemporary percussion ensemble devoted to the art of hand drumming. Founded in 1997 by percussionist John Bergamo, along with Randy Gloss, Andrew Grueschow, and Austin Wrinkle. Hand’Stan
is the groups fourth CD, this recording is a blend of various styles, presenting master drummers who specialize in various percussion instruments. Abbos Kosimov, renowned doira player from Uzbekistan and Swapan Chaudhuri, from India, a master tabla player are guest musicians on the project. Inviting music for drummers and non-drummers alike, presented in a pleasing manner that is quite entrancing. The CD is arranged in three parts, the first part entitled "Twoweeks Time, Tweeks Time" composed by Randy Gloss and is comprised of six pieces. Mr. Gloss is credited with miscellaneous drums and cymbals, gongs, triangle, pandiero and gankogui. He is credited with additional percussion instruments as the project progresses. The music on these six tracks is very diverse, with influences that sound as if they are all over the map. The basis of all western music can be heard in some of these phrases. There are call and response drum breaks throughout and inspirational drumming from all the participants.
The second part of the CD, track seven is a composition entitled "Xinwan Padma" composed by Brad Dutz. Mr. Dutz is credited with playing glass marimba and shakers on this selection. A very pretty rhythm takes shape with a quartet of percussionists building on the introduction, adding layers of sound and exploring the rhythm with syncopation, dynamics and changes in tempo. Andrew Grueschew on berimbau does a wonderful job.
The third part made up of two tracks "Tantana" by Abbos Kosimov and "Butterfly" by Houman Pourmehdi. Tantana played at a rapid tempo for the first half is very exciting with hand drumming that is on fire. The second half has a change in the dynamic, still fiery drumming but with more syncopation, pauses, off beats and accents. Butterfly carries on in a similar style to the preceding track, the same players, similar sounds, beats and rhythms.
If you have the slightest interest in hand drumming you must have this CD, if you are interested in drumming, rhythm, timing, creating interesting beats and expanding your soling capabilities this is a must have CD. If you just want to sit back, relax and groove to some fine sounds, this is a hypnotic record of therapeutic value, Hand’Stan by Hands On’Semble.