The product of years of reflection and experimentation, the nine diverse pieces of this expansive album are a testament to Farah's consummate keyboard artistry and to his devotion to bringing together the two musical cultures from which he draws his musical inspiration. The contemplative, Bach-like "Introitus" is followed by the pulsating "Mercurial," and despite the Euro-Arabic ambit, the latter has a distinctly Cuban rhythmic feel; it's energizing. Meanwhile, the panoramic "Susus" is utterly hypnotic. Pulsating yet introspective, confident yet yearning, it's a way-deep, hauntingly melodic tour de force of composition and performance.
With its driving Arabic heartbeat, "Between Carthage and Rome" is a vortex of images: dancers, deserts, soldiers, slaves, monuments, history alive in the blood. Farah's passionate artistry imbues every track, making this one highly recommended. (BRM)