Esthema is an impressive instrumental jazz/World fusion group from Boston Massachusetts which incorporates elements of progressive folk, ambient New Age, avant garde, and Middle Eastern World Music deeply rooted in traditional ethnic Greek, Turkish, and Balkan music. The album plays like an aural travelogue via Gypsy caravan to mysterious and exotic locales.
The music is awash with lush romantic melodies, eclectic Middle Eastern motifs, a touch of foreign intrigue, and a dash of "Larks Tongue In Aspic" era King Crimson, plus some inspired playing from the entire ensemble which includes: Mac Ritchy (acoustic and electric oud & bouzouki), Andy Milas (acoustic and electric guitar), George Lernis (drums & percussion), Naseem Alatrash (cello), Onur Dilisen (violin), Tom Martin (bass).
As with their 2009 album "The Hereness And Nowness Of Things" - which was reviewed here at ProgNaut by reviewer Terry Jackson who sites references to the bands The Gypsy King, California Guitar Trio, and Azigza - I'd add a strong dose of Shadowfax, Mahavishnu Orchestra, and new age artists Jerry Goodman and Jean Luc Ponty for the 2014 release "Long Goodbye".
And on the track "Reminiscence" there is a unique blending of both traditional Celtic and Middle Eastern influences in a sort of Azigza meets Chieftains collaboration.
Long Goodbye" is for the mature, discriminating prog/rock listener. Someone sophisticated and opened minded enough to expand their musical horizons. After a single listen you'll be hooked.
Reviewed by Joseph Shingler on July 8th, 2014