The Astral City (Nosso Lar) (2008) IMPORT (Brazil) Music from the spiritual dwelling. Piano, synthesizers and samplers: Corciolli Violins: Alexey Chashnikov, Elina Suris, Heitor Hideo Fujinami, Lev Veksler, Svetlana Tereshkova, Tatiana Vinogradova Cellos: Heloisa Torres Meirelles, Kirill Bogatyrev Inspired by the spiritualist best-seller 'Nosso Lar' DailyOm Review January 22, 2009 Nosso Lar (The Astral City) Corciolli 2008 Corciolli is a Brazilian musician and composer who has recorded with artists ranging from Tibetan Monks to composers like Hans Zimmer and popular-classical types like Placido Domingo. His work brazenly mixes genres and conventions, unafraid to add western operatic sweep to eastern New Age ambience and vice versa. Nosso Lar ('The Astral City') is based on the book of the same name by Francisco Cândido Xavier, which describes souls and their journey to the afterlife. Corciolli helps take you there with an album full of mystical bliss and possibilities for transcendent visualization. Playing an array of synthesizers offset by quietly melancholic acoustic piano, Corciolli is a symphony unto himself. Here, he is accompanied by a string ensemble, however, and the arrangements are brilliant, aiding and enhancing Corciolli's positions-as in the beautiful 'Bosque das Aguas'-without overstating or resorting to bombast. Orchestral sweep mixes comfortably with ethereal synthesizer tonalities, and a perfect blend of dynamics keeps things from ever getting too dense or too minimal. This 'Astral City' is a miracle of architectural construction (which makes sense, since Corciolli originally studied design), with lots to catch the ear and soak up the senses without the soundscape ever becoming busy or overcrowded. In 'Novo Mundo' soothing piano keys expand and contract to form pulsing bell-tones, a dreamy, hazy reverie of synthesizers and arpeggio piano-notes that drift in the mind like lazy smoke rings. This compares nicely to more solo-based work, like the mix of gentle acoustic-piano arpeggios and cascading synthesizer-pads that close the album ('Sempre'). Throughout Nosso Lar one is continually reminded of other melodies, other artists, all just flashes of recognition before they disappear back into the pleasant haze. Corciolli is clearly the sort of inspired musician who absorbs and incorporates nearly everything he hears. When he's able to boil all of it down into such simple beauty as he does here, adding so much sincere, heartfelt love to a simple array of electronic and acoustic sounds, you realize what a gift it is to be able to be a part of it. What better honor than to have your place in the pantheon of Nosso Lar, an astral city so large and inviting that there's plenty of room for all.