Xuacu Amieva
Tiempo de Mitos

"A Time of Myths." Was this going to be a New Age record of Asturian bagpiping? Not exactly; it is more accurate to characterize Amieva's project as a pastoral catalogue of Asturia. Amieva presents traditional tunes here about elves and evil, crop-damaging wizards as unrelentingly pleasant. It's something of a shame that his own songs, designed to embody and reflect upon the legends that haunt the Iberian landscape, are treated so tamely; still, it is high praise to note that Tiempo de Mitos consistently brought to mind Malicorne's seminal Almanach. This is a world where bodhran and tamborines call up demons and lusty goat-men. If only there were more unrestrained electricity! The CD packaging is positively gorgeous, the thick accompanying booklet being heavily laden with colorful rustic imagry that captures the mysteries Amieva seeks to evoke via his superb flute and pipe playing. Tiempo de Mitos floods a room with late spring and early summer fantasies from northwestern Spain. - Lee Blackstone

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