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  • Jonathan Widran

ARMIK, "Gypsy Flame (25th Anniversary Edition)"

Listen to any pop song on the radio today, and it’s doubtful it will bear any sonic resemblance to what we were vibing with back in 1995. The truly magical part of the Nouveau Flamenco movement of the last decade of the 20th Century is that its infectious melodies, rousing and intoxicating rhythms and intricate string soloing sounds as fresh and inspiring today.

Iranian born guitarist Armik, who is of Armenian descent and discovered his love for flamenco seeing the legendary Paco de Lucia during his 70’ travels to Spain, released his debut album Rain Dancer in 1994. He quickly became one of the decade’s most popular and emotionally expressive artists in the genre, building a foundation for an extraordinary career that’s carried buoyantly into the 21st Century. Overall, he’s released 32 albums, including 28 Top Tens and three #1’s on the Billboard New Age Albums chart.

His trademark breakthrough hit “Gypsy Flame” translated brilliantly across the decades into the digital era, with thousands of YouTube views and nearly 1.6 million streams on Spotify. Armik artfully bridges (and fuses) past and present brilliantly with a bright, vibrant re-recording of the song, formally titled “Gypsy Flame (25th Anniversary Edition).” It's a colorful, fanciful endeavor whose intention is to showcase the continuity and progress of Nouveau Flamenco music over the years while powerfully reflecting the sum total of Armik's personal creative development and life experiences since then.

The result is nonstop exotic buoyancy from start to finish, with the guitarist's deft fluid, sometimes jangly, often times sizzlingly percussive tones building melodic and grooving heat throughout a most uplifting and optimistic journey. Armik’s commitment to sharing an aspect of his exciting musical development over the past quarter century makes “Gypsy Flame (25th Anniversary) Edition” so much more than a nostalgic re-visit to a glorious past.

Along with the April 17 release of a fresh recording of “Tango Flamenco” (another classic from the Gypsy Flame Album), the track represents an artist as committed to his place in history as his optimism for the future as he embraces the road ahead. We all need and should be grateful for that kind of inspiration here in 2020.

Listen to "Gypsy Flame (25th Anniversary Edition)" here:

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