Once-dark artist Mingo continues his foray into a lighter, New Age-focused space on his new release, and it’s obvious from the first moments that he’s quite comfortable here. World flavors come through courtesy of a variety of strings, lilting flute, and blends of percussion. The grooves are laid-back and pleasant, and Mingo mixes in just the right amount of quieter ambient spaces to make the mix intriguing. “The Beach House” shows off the signature blend at play here, the aforementioned strings and flute laying down a clean, familiar melodic layer over a 1-2-3, bass-bass-snare beat and understated pads. Soothing, yet you’ll find yourself tapping your toes along with that simple rhythm. Mingo hits his stride for me in the pairing of “Rays Through the Mist” and “Terra Globa.” Here, a raga feel takes hold, spicing the air with Middle Eastern influences. Hand percussion and sharp, plucked strings lead the way as a bass drone wends hypnotically along. At just four minutes in length, “Rays…” leaves me wanting more, but it also dovetails well with “Terra Globa.” I actually catch myself whistling along with that track’s repeating hook, and I get fully caught up in the twang of a sampled oud as the piece morphs into an ecstatic folk dance. The title track is a beautiful work, a deceptively simple pairing of twinkling keyboard runs over a blend of ambient pads–a nice reminder of the artist’s past work, folded into the new. There’s a similar feel in “Equilibrium Point,” where clean, crystalline notes reminiscent of Steven Halpern’s chakra-cleansing excursions ring out in patient runs over long strings. Close your eyes and focus your breath while this one plays. Another great release from Mingo, a fresh step in this latest part of his musical journey.
Available from Mingo’s web site.