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Dennis Rea presents "Giant Steppes"

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    Posted: 02 Mar 2021 at 6:47pm
MoonJune Records - DownBeat Readers Poll’s Record Label Of The Year category:
4th place 2020 / 3th place 2018 / 4th place 2017 / 7th place 2016 /11th place 2015

MoonJune Records - All About Jazz Readers Poll’s Record Label Of The Year category:
3th place 2020
MoonJune stalwart DENNIS REA (Moraine, Iron Kim Style, Zhongyu) continues his series of “musical travelogues” with Giant Steppes, a boldly unconventional exploration of Central Asian music that follows on from his acclaimed 2010 MoonJune release Views From Chicheng Precipice. The album also comes with Rea's companion book Tuva and Busted, available as a free download from Blue Ear Books at blueearbooks.com/books/tuva-and-busted 

Recorded over several years in Seattle and Siberia, Giant Steppes is the ever-unpredictable guitarist/composer/arranger's most ambitious album so far, interpolating Silk Road desert airs, Russian choral songs, Tuvan throat singing, and mutant Tibetan pop with a gleeful yet respectful disregard for genre purity. The album is all over the map both geographically and sonically, mingling jazz, heavy prog, krautrock, surf, electroacoustic soundscapes, and field recordings and showcasing such formidable musicians as Tuvan singer Albert Kuvezin (Yat Kha), celebrated Russian choral ensemble Juliana & PAVA, wonderful bassist Wadim Dicke, trumpet mage Greg Kelley, Rea's 1970s Earthstar bandmate Daniel Zongrone, and Seattle treasures Steve FiskDoug HaireStuart DempsterDick ValentineDon BermanGreg CampbellBrian Oppel, and Greg Powers

What's more, Giant Steppes is paired with Rea's new companion book Tuva and Busted, a joint publication made available for free by MoonJune Records and Blue Ear Books. In the manner of his previous book Live at the Forbidden City, this richly illustrated account relates the improbable tale of how an early interest in Tuvan music eventually led, via two MuzEnergo tours of Russia, to Rea performing in the remote republic, collaborating with distinguished Tuvan musicians, and even acting as a judge in a throat-singing competition. The book includes expanded liner notes for Giant Steppes that detail each album track’s origin and making. 
Active since the mid-1970s, guitarist-composer-arranger DENNIS REA has led or been a key contributor to such innovative groups as Moraine, Iron Kim Style, Zhongyu, LAND, Savant, and Earthstar and has worked with such prominent creative musicians as Hector Zazou, Stuart Dempster, Cui Jian, Albert Kuvezin, Klaus Schulze, Han Bennink, Hawkwind members Nik Turner and Michael Moorcock, and members of King Crimson, R.E.M., Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Santana, Ministry, and the Sun Ra Arkestra. He has performed widely throughout the U.S. and in China, Russia, Germany, the UK, Taiwan, and Mexico. He has appeared on roughly 40 recordings to date, of which 7 for MoonJune Records, and other labels. He is also the author of Live at the Forbidden City: Musical Encounters in China and Taiwan, a chronicle of his adventures as one of the earliest progressive Western musicians to perform in China; and Tuva and Busted, an account of his further musical peregrinations in Central Asia. Rea's work has increasingly focused on bridging musical traditions from around the globe in personalized ways, as shown on his landmark albums Views From Chicheng Precipice and Giant Steppes. 

"Dennis Rea's adventurous guitar playing blends jazz, rock, experimental, and world music into a unique vocabulary, marked by haunting lyricism, enigmatic textures, agile improvisation, and the raw dynamism of rock."
If You have missed MoonJune Records's previous releases:

SOFT WORKS - Abracadabra In Osaka (live 2003)
feat. Elton Dean, Allan Holdsworth, Hugh Hopper, John Marshall

STICK MEN -  Owari
feat. Tony Levin, Markus Reuter, Pat Mastelotto, special guest Gary Husband


feat. Mark Wingfield, Jane Chapman, Adriano Adewale


feat. Dwiki Dharmawan, Markus Reuter, Boris Savoldelli, Asaf Sirkis

feat. Vasko Atanasovski, Simone Zanchini, Michel Godard, Bodek Janke

SOFT MACHINE -  Live at the Baked Potato
feat. John Etheridge, Theo Travis, Roy Babbington, John Marshall

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