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Federico Parra - Descending (Self-Released)

29 October 2014

On his new album, Descending, Federico Parra seems to approach music just as much from an intellectual standpoint as an emotional one. Originally from Argentina, Parra has taught at the Berklee College of Music and served as music director at Samadhi Integral, but he has also spent 12 years studying Buddhism. Naturally, this duality has come across heavily in the unique hybrid of music he creates, as if you’re simultaneously listening to an ambient album from Brian Eno and a progressive, world beat record from Peter Gabriel.

The album changes wildly yet deftly from comparatively commercial songs to extremely experimental, but even within each of these categories there are still major stylistic differences from song to song. A few songs are fairly traditional folk songs like “The Other” or to a lesser extent, “Descending,” but then Parra will throw in the odd electronic song like the almost danceable “San Jacinto.” For fans of the more traditionally poppy songs, others like the ambient “Stellar Waves” may pose as a challenge, but the album almost acts as an introduction, bridging the gap between the two worlds. It’s a schizophrenic, disjointed album to be sure, but it’s also fascinatingly entrancing. Descending will be released November 1st.