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Singin’ Rhythm
Vivi Vassileva (marimba, vibraphone, percussion)
Maruan Sakas (piano)
Thomas Ganzenmuller (double bass)
Maxime Pidoux (drum-set, cajon)
Daniel Martinez (congas, bongos, percussion)
Lucas Campara Diniz (guitar)
rec. 2017, Studio Franken, Nurnberg, Germany
ALPHA CLASSICS 463 [59:40]

Singin’ Rhythm is the debut album of Vivi Vassileva, an amazing young percussionist from Germany. Originally from Bulgaria, her family members are all top violinists. Vivi started her musical career with the violin, but soon discovered her own unique talents, and has developed into one of the world’s most exciting new percussionists. This disc features eleven instrumental numbers in a variety of styles and arrangements.

Zamba Para Escuchar Tu Silencio (translated as Zamba To Hear Your Silence) was written in 1993 by Argentinian guitarist and composer Guillo Espel. Composed as a Zamba, a rural Argentine folk dance, this enchanting tune also brings a gentle touch of Saudade-style wistfulness from Brazil. Composed in 6/8 time, it has become a favorite among marimba enthusiasts. Viva’s delicate touch displays her musical sensitivity, and her timing and intonation bring out the marimba’s soft tones and melodic visions of falling raindrops.

Bate Coxa, meaning “clapping thighs”, was composed by classical guitarist Marco Pereira, and named for a traditional Brazilian dance where couple move so closely together that they touch inner thighs. The lively arrangement features Vivi performing on vibraphone, accompanied by Brazilian guitarist Lucas Campara Diniz. The metallic ring of the vibraphone is a compelling contrast to the soft strings of the guitar. Both musicians also perform a fine duet on Hora Staccato, composed by master violinist Grigoras Dinicu in 1906. The piece has long been a favorite of violinists to showcase their virtuosity, and provides a perfect vehicle for Vivi to perform long, fast runs on the vibraphone while Lucas keeps a steady rhythm on guitar.

El Pario, Op. 47 was composed in 2003 by Spanish pianist and composer Oriol Cruixent. This snappy Latin tune features the talented Vivi Vassileva Quintette, with Vivi performing on vibraphone and sharing leads with fellow Quintette members, pianist Maruan Sakas, drummer Maxime Pidoux, double bassist Thomas Ganzenmuller, and percussionist Daniel Martinez. One of the more unusual numbers on this disc is Kalino Mome, one of Vivi’s own compositions. It is an arrangement of a Bulgarian folk song with 11/8 timing, and Vivi performs solo on 13 different instruments.

A 26-page booklet is included, with program notes in German, English and French. The sound quality is excellent.

Bruce McCollum

Zamba Para Escuchar Tu Silencio Guillo Espel [5:27]
Sailing For Phil Eric Sammut [15.49]
Bate Coxa Marco Pereira [2:18]
Hora Staccato Grigoras Dinicu [1:49]
Marimba Moksha Op. 46 Oriol Cruixent [4:19]
Variations on Dowland’s Lachrimae Pavane Keiko Abe [5:17]
Kalino Mome Vivi Vassileva [7:11]
Pipero Misturado Vivi Vassileva, Lucas Campara Diniz [9:45]
El Pario Op. 47 Oriol Cruixent [7:41]

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