Lei Qiang was a giant of the Chinese classical composers of the 20th century. This album is the first in a two-part series of his legendary music by the way of the traditional Erhu instrument. Is it worth listening to? Let’s find out.
We begin with the wonderful and melodic Night Song. It is a grand and brilliant composition and sounds very well structured. Many traditional Chinese instruments are in this mix. The fluttering melodies are captivating and interesting. It is a great listening experience all the way from China. Brilliant Chinese classical music.
Next is the joyous and upbeat Tea Song. It’s a lively Chinese instrumental piece. Indeed, the Chinese do love their tea, and this sounds remarkedly interesting and enjoyable. The intertwining melodies are well constructed and are very beautiful. A thoroughly enjoyable piece.
Spin The Cotton comes next and is a little slower, yet is simply beautiful and enjoyable to hear. Pieces like this no doubt cement the popularity of music like this. It’s a great listen to those who enjoy this kind of music. Unique.
Picking Red Chestnuts is another joyous and upbeat sounding track. It sounds nothing at all like western music but is a case of quality over quantity. A magical sounding journey of Chinese classical music.
Next is The Flickering Of The Candle Flame. It’s more melancholy and melodic sounding, yet is truly magical to hear. It takes us to an image evoking kind of place, completely different than anything else one can hear. Rhythm and melody intertwine wonderfully here. A good listen. The reoccurring segments of melodies are very touching. It ends gently.
After that, we have The Ballad Of The Blue Flower, which begins with a strong melody and enters a very good quality music listening experience. Many melodies tell a story without words of Chinese history and culture. It goes for around ten minutes or so, yet it is a great instrumental piece all the way through. Traditional Chinese music fans will rejoice at this sort of piece. Clever, beautiful, and memorable. There is a multitude of different listening sections for those who dislike repetition. A great Chinese instrumental piece, and worth hearing. It slowly evolves throughout the listening experience to be emotion-provoking. The changes throughout the piece are dramatic. Almost like progressive music, it is brilliantly done and well structured.
Moonlight Reflected On The Er-Quan Spring is a slower and shorter piece, but it is just as essential as listening as is the rest of this album. It’s an audio story done by the music of such an experience. It reaches an expertly played crescendo of Chinese sounds and is musically brilliant. A grand and beautiful piece. It becomes a sort of swing section towards the end and ends gently.
Jasmine Flower definitely sounds optimistic and hopeful. It’s a short and sweet listen of melodic Chinese goodness. For those who enjoy this sort of music, you will be thoroughly happy and satisfied with these Chinese classical pieces. Brilliant.
Next is Pick Up The Betel/The Purple Bamboo Song. This is an enjoyable and enduring melodic listen. No doubt very popular amongst those who enjoy traditional Chinese music, it is a grand and positive listen. This sort of music would be no doubt popular in certain parts of China, as well as being popular amongst those who dislike ordinary western music. A great listen overall. It switches key mid-song, a rather interesting surprise here, keep an ear out for it.
Following it is Moonlit Night. This piece is another great Chinese classical music story to hear, and a great listen, once again. Slow, melodic, and enduring, a very good listen indeed, and one of the first Chinese classical albums you must hear in your life. Brilliant overall. Fluttering melodies mix together with a great backing section, worth hearing for sure. A big tempo change occurs towards the end.
Liu Yang River is another great Chinese classical piece referring to Chinese history and culture itself. A gorgeous mixture of Chinese melodies are here, and take you to a place far from where you are right now. Short, yet very enjoyable indeed.
Farewell Red Army obviously refers to the Chinese Communist Army. Fortunately, this is not a propaganda piece so much as a historical piece. It’s another beautiful, wonderful, and interesting Chinese classical music piece. Another great piece by Lei Qiang here. An enjoyable listen.
Lastly here is Boys And Flowers/Raise The Red Lantern. It’s an upbeat and danceable piece from our master composer to end this wonderful traditional album of Chinese classical music. Chinese music is well done here, and even the last track proves so.
Although many people would dismiss traditional Chinese music, Lei Qiang does absolutely wonderfully here. It’s surely worth a listen, even to western ears. A great set of instrumental compositions and music overall. Grand and welcoming sounding Chinese classical music.