~Meniscus Archives~

Summer 2004
Issue #4

May - August 2004

Visual Art and Spiritual Evolution
Andy Gmür
Biological evolution has advanced to the point that a 'spiritual evolution' is taking place. This natural process is happening, no matter if we are aware of it or not.

The Dehydration Epidemic
Jaime Larese
Our first step to improving a myriad of health problems is understanding dehydration and how much water we need to be drinking daily to maintain our fragile health.

What's Endangering Our Earth?
Jeff Hernandez
The everyday items that are meant to facilitate our lives, in fact may be harming us more than we bargained for. Organic chemicals are extremely cheap to produce and are very effective in their job functions.

Looking Forward to Clean Energy
Jon Heinrich
Fortunately, solutions exist and if we are able to raise awareness and convince our policy makers to consider it a priority, we can all look forward to a bright, energy-rich future instead of one marked by environmental, political, and social disaster.
Aaron Ades
You don't need to save for a rainy day if you create a system that is in harmony with the needs of the human animal. Create what you need and eliminate the reliance on things you cannot create.
Ten Things You Can Do to Help Your Earth
Chrystie Hopkins
Whether you live in New York City or Big Fork, Montana, everyday decisions that you make can impact the environment. The revolution starts at home. Here are ten things that you can do to help save YOUR world.
Derek Gumuchian
We are all one. In this article we explore the idea of the Earth as an entire entitiy and as our mother.
The Fabulous Sylvan Sisters
Dan Berthiaume
An hour later, Donna was lazily reclining in the passenger seat of Melinda's cherry red Volkswagen New Beetle, consuming a brunch consisting of a can of Diet Pepsi and a low-tar cigarette...
è bella Designs in Peru
Michael Weintrob
Photographer Michael Weintrob travels to Peru with è bella Designs, to capture how è bella has helped to revive the art of weaving and the Peruvuian economy.
Rough Around the Edges
Jonathan Alsop

Technically, first thing in the morning is the very best time to taste wine since your palate is fresh and unviolated. But I don't do it: the sight of daddy in his bathrobe on a Sunday morning slogging down a half-dozen bottles of wine could stay with a child.

Show Review:
Pete Pidgeon & Arcoda—Six Years of friends, funk and crack horns.
Jon Heinrich
Pete Pidgeon & Arcoda celebrate six years as a band by playing at Boston's Harpers Ferry. Opening up for Arcoda was Color and Talea and Caveman. 4/4/04.

CD Reviews:

Empty Food
Kerry Rumore
Fish Pond &
The Little Prince Discovers a Rose
Katie Molnar

Selections by Brian Gagné:

  • [It Fails to Pass]
  • Fever/Lever
  • Grief
  • Smallness annihilated in the scope of puzzlement
  • Untitled A

Spring Issue Launch
Club Europa,
Feb. 19, 2004

State of the Art,
Oct. 23, 2003

Portland, Maine
Aug. 30, 2003

Premier Launch,
Zeitgeist Gallery,
Aug. 14, 2003


CD Reviews:

Exercising the Demons
Big Fuzz
Rock is rock; no matter what sub-category you try and place it in. Whether guitarist Fuzz is playing with the funk band Deep Banana Blackout, or with his latest side project Big Fuzz, he always sticks to his rock n’ roll guitar roots. His first album as the Big Fuzz, Exercising the Demons, is a tribute to simple classic rock lyrics, and complex guitar riffs. Just to show his diversity, there are two excellent horn players ripping it up. Rob Somerville on sax and Rob Volo on trombone bring the jazz edge to Fuzz’s roaring guitar solos.

The back yard barbeque flavor is refreshing and light. The funk presence on tracks like “Next To You” blends beautifully with the harmonized and drawn-out classic rock style vocals. Big Fuzz is not afraid to slow it down. On “Never Be the Same” Fuzz belts out sad lyrics, while bassist Benj LeFevre, keys player Barry Seelen, and drummer Andy Sanesi, provide the drama and intensity required to pull off a rock n’ roll song about lost love. To add another sound to the album, Fuzz brings us “Walk”. This strange track starts off with a cello solo, and then into rock guitar, all with powerful backing vocals that lend a gospel feel. Fuzz rounds off the album with the blues inspired “Headin’ for the Door”, just because he can.

The Big Fuzz has a diverse, and inspiring sound. Blame the craving for a cheap domestic light beer on the rock n’ roll. Check out www.fuzztunes.com for more information about the band and the album.

Long Drive Home
Ralph E. Hayes

When I walked to catch the Fung Wha, Chinatown-to-Chinatown express bus to New York City, it was by all measure, a perfect spring day in Boston. As I stood, waiting my turn in the sizeable crowd, a noticeable tension permeated the crowd; the desire to get a seat on the bus! You could feel the anxiety in the air. Although there were only enough people to fill half the bus, the mood suggested worry from everyone—we might not all make it on the bus.

Finally as I reached the front of the line, the ticket-taker said “wrong bus company, down there,” pointing down the road. A jolt of urgency and humiliation flashed through my face as I hurried down the sidewalk in the blazing sun.

With the headphone already on my neck, I hit play on Ralph E. Hayes’, Long Ride Home.

Suddenly, the smooth prancing guitar took me to another place before the bus even got there. I remembered, with a deep breath, how beautiful the day was. I looked up to the radiant spring sun piercing the blue sky. Bright buildings stood all around, freshly washed by one of the rainiest Aprils Boston has ever seen. The expressive Stratocaster guitar syncopated perfectly with the fresh green leaves—only a few weeks old—rustling in the crisp ocean breeze.

My world of anxiety-laden thoughts were put to rest by the ambient surf-guitar of Hayes.

Ralph’s timeless, “guitar noir” sound puts the listener in a slow dreamy state of bliss. The songs tend towards a minimalistic, black & white tranquility. Characterizing his mood music, Ralph describes his melodies as “kind of like it’s 11 P.M., when everyone has gone to bed and all is quiet...you turn down the lights, light a candle, and unwind.”

As I took my seat and glanced around, the transitory chaos of getting onto the right bus had ended, and every person around me had a chill look of peace on their face—as if they too had just noticed how nice of a day it was. With a signature sound similar to that of Chris Isaak or Chet Atkins, the warm tube guitar, left me languorous for the long road ahead.


Luis Garay Percussion World

The Luis Garay Percussion World proves once again that percussion can hold its own. On the newly released Sacumba the group is lead by percussion legend Luis Garay. Other members of the ensemble include, Wilbur Wood, Leon Eynatyan and Miguel Alfaro. They perform on a variety of percussion instruments including, kit drums, whistles, marimbas, Argentinean drums, and a wealth of Afro-Latin percussion such as congas, surdo, bongo, agogo, timbales, tambourine, colanuts, djembe, ngoma, and if that were not enough, they also throw in gongs, bells, and chimes.

Garay who was born in Cordoba, Argentina, studied at the Cordoba State Conservatory of Music. He continued his education at the Catholic University of America, with advanced studies at the Escola de Musica de Brasilia in Brazil. The intense, yet organized percussion arrangements highlight Garay’s classical training. The variety of instruments used throughout every piece brings a liberal and verbose intensity to the arrangements.

Garay has received numerous awards and accolades over the years for his incredible use and understanding of percussion. The prestige and honor has not changed his dedication and willingness to experiment with new and innovative percussion techniques and sounds. This innovation can be heard on every track of Sacumba.

The addition of the incredible conga player Wilbur Wood adds a cohesive sound to each track. The combination of Latin American and African percussion beats is an exhilarating and ongoing barrage of beats, bangs, rhythms and phonic riots.

Percussion World rallies between the varied and irregular beats of Latin music to the constant and full tribal rhythms. On the track “Dumbe”, Garay, Wood, Eynatyan and Alfaro all play only Afro-Latin drums, including the djembe, congas, ngoma and bongo. The driving and weaving sounds created by the drum circle of musicians shows the power of the mighty drum. The puling beats will course through your body and direct your momentum.

To change up the drum circle vibe, the ensemble pulls together “Marimba Azucar”, which is a tribute to the beauty and vibe of the marimba. The marimba solicites memories of the pacific coast and the fresh ocean air. Garay refers to it as the classic surfer film feeling. It is the driving force behind the surf guitar.

Sacumba is an album that commands the listeners attention. This is not a CD to put on at a party for mellow background music. This is a CD for the musician and specifically, the percussion enthusiast. Drum lines, jammin’ drum circles, the symphonic timpani solo, the guy in the subway playing the bucket; if these are the sounds that appeal to you, then Luis Garay has created an ensemble and a CD that will bring the beat home.
Visit www.luisgaray.com for more information.

Meniscus staff



Meniscus Magazine © 2004. All material is property of respective artists.