Oliver Miguel | Esperanza


Within the first few seconds of the 2003 release Esperanza by multi instrumentalist and Plan C member Oliver Miguel, the intensity picks up immediately. While he happens to predominantly play the saxophone, the Latin-tinged “When Angels Cry Suite” begins with a seductive guitar solo by Ricardo Madrid as part of the first movement “Sereno”. By the time the rest of the ensemble appears on the second movement “Sin Alivio” Miguel’s sax display takes over with relentless, climactic and sensual overtones. Simeon Abbott has the last say on the third and final movement “Palermo” putting the cherry on top of the cake with a breathtaking piano solo.

Now while this could potentially have been a CD all on its own, Miguel gives an encore performance with some more songs up his sleeve without straying away from the tone that has been set. “Zara” continues this with some more of Madrid’s subtle solo styling and then followed by a strong sax reply from Miguel. Things change up with “Illusion Del Corazon” on an up tempo extravaganza, while continuing the constant Miguel/Madrid element throughout this project. Abbott goes to electric piano on this one. After all of these songs, the concluding “In a Heartbeat” goes percussive highlighting Miguel and Madrid one last time. As you can tell by what has been forementioned, the main foundation of this release is created through the interaction between these two brilliant musicians. The result is an emotional and intimate experience. So for all you romantics or seducers, Esperanza can definitely make things happen. Just remember to thank Oliver Miguel.

by R.C. April 2008

The tracks
1 – 3. When Angels Cry (Suite)
part I - Sereno / part II - Sin Alivio / part III - Palermo
4. Saudades
5. Luna Morena
6. Chocolate Roses
7. Zara
8. Rozar Tu Piel
9. Illusion Del Corazon
10. Alma Fria
11. In a Heartbeat
The musicians
Oliver Miguel: saxes, rhythm guitar, palmas
Ricardo Madrid: guitars
Simeon Abbott: piano, keyboard
Vicky Oveson: piano
Scott Munro: electric & acoustic bass
Daniel Menjivar: fretless bass
Hank Insel: electric bass
Dustin Shaskin: acoustic bass
Chris Dadge: drums
Jean-Christophe Leroy: drums
Brent Van Dusen: percussion, cajon, palmas
Marcelo Andres: percussion, congas
Eric Boseman: drum programming, live drums
Israel "toto" Berriel: congas
We welcome your comments and feedback
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