I was not familiar with Mehdi's music until this album arrived for review. I'd seen his name, but hadn't heard the music. Overall, it has been a very pleasant surprise. The music is soothing and relaxing, but is several notches above being ear-candy. Much of the instrumentation is acoustic rather than all keyboards, giving the sound a much lusher quality - especially with the strings. Some of the percussion is "canned" and can be mildly annoying, but the real strings, guitar, flute, and piano more than make up for it. I keep running across comparisons of Mehdi's music and Yanni's, and I don't think they are that similar, other than that they are both pianists/keyboardists and draw on various cultural influences in their music. And both use one name! Fans of Yanni's quieter music will probably love Mehdi, and I think his music would also strongly appeal to fans of 2002 although it isn't quite as ethereal or "spacey." My favorite track is "Flight of the Butterfly," a beautiful ballad with a strong backbeat. Flute carries most of the melody, depicting the graceful flight of a butterfly. Strings, guitar, solo violin, and piano enrich the sound and make this quite a compelling piece. This is a great CD to wake up to, unwind with, or to have in the background with dinner or other quiet activities.
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