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More new sounds from Shadowfax

The Dreams of Children
The Dreams of Children
By Shadowfax

Windham Hill Records: 1985

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This review first appeared in the January 22, 1985 issue of The Daily Aztec.

Defying description or pigeonholing, Shadowfax combines elements of Asian, African, Indian, jazz, classical and rock to create a sound experience unlike anything else around.

And few groups seem to enjoy their work as much as Shadowfax. In live performance, the punctuate their playing with smiles, laughter and dancing. Happily, this liveliness translates well on their latest studio release.

As with the band's two previous releases, "Shadowfax" and "Shadowdance," "The Dreams of Children" is built around compositions by saxophonist/producer Chuck Greenberg and guitarist G.E. Stinson.

Stinson's "Word From the Village" is immediately one of the band's best songs. Guest vocalist MOrris Dollison lends the song an added dimension with his syncopated chanting, while Stuart Nevitt keeps beat on a variety of percussion instruments (and objects not normally thought of as instruments!). The song plays like a Peace Corps theme, with all its different influences and rhythms.

Bassist Phil Maggini's "Shaman Song" is the most unusual here. Jamil Szmadzinski plays the melody line on electric violin, evoking comparisons to Jean Luc Ponty. And Szmadzinski then steps back and plays rhythm on his violin – plucking out a bass line – while Stinson takes a few measure of lead on guitar.

Shadowfax has again shown that they are still exploring, still looking for new sounds. Those who share that quest are unlikely to be disappointed.