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Articles Home » 2006 Articles » Meisel, Hubi - 2006 Kailash
Meisel, Hubi - 2006 Kailash

ARTIST: Meisel, Hubi
ALBUM: Kailash
LABEL: Lion Music
YEAR: 2006


LINEUP: Hubi J. Meisel - vocals * Vivien Lalu - keyboards * Marcel Coenen, Jorge Salan, Joop Wolters - guitars * Johan Niemann - bass * Daniel Flores - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Potala Palace * 02 Red Oracle * 03 Snow Lion * 04 Himalayan Sunset * 05 Shiva's Dance * 06 Kailash - Jewel Of Ice * 07 The Wheel Of Life * 08 Milarepa's Cave Of Miracles * 09 Meredeka *10 The Great Prayer (Monlam Chenmo) * 11 The Gentlemen Of Great Magic * 12 Tigers Of Everest



German prog artist Hubi Meisel returns in 2006 with his new project 'Kailash'. The man certainly has an ear for the unusual, his projects touching on fringe subjects based around myth, legend, history, and fantasy. All the sort of stuff I eat for breakfast. So with radar and sonar duly tuned, I am preparing to wade my way into Hubi's latest adventure, which takes us all the way up to the Himalayas and beyond. 'Kailash' is a concept piece that touches on ancient Buddhist/Hindu mythology and describes a man's adventurous journey across the icy heights of the Himalayas up to the legendary holy Mount Kailash, where an important secret is finally unveiled. According to the liner notes, 'Kailash' is an album built around peace and hope, the concept paying homage to that part of the world which is steeped in mystery and controversy. Similarly to what we heard on his last album 'EmOcean', Hubi worked closely with French keyboardist Vivien Lalu again, but this time he has enlisted the help of guitar wizards Marcel Coenen (from Sun Caged) and Jorge Salan (from Spanish band Mago De Oz). Plus he is joined by the Minds Eye rhythm section of Daniel Flores (there's that name again!) and Johan Niemann. Helping out on the bonus tracks is another Dutch guitarist Joop Wolters.

The Songs
Musically, you could compare this to Italian band Vision Divine, who released a fantastic concept piece last year called 'The Perfect Machine'. While the dynamics of the music might be subtly different, the vocals of Meisel and Michele Luppi tell their respective stories with a lyrical similarity. The opening sequence for 'Potala Palace' is a smooth entrance, Meisel's vocals lilting at times, but not before a killer solo from Marcel Coenen wakes us up, as our main character wanders the halls of Potala. Once our traveller finds his way past a mysterious doorway, he is confronted by the 'Red Oracle', giving him a message to head off in search of his quest upon the sacred Mount Kailash, some 700 miles west of Lhasa. On this journey he will be accompanied by a loyal companion and guide, the 'Snow Lion', a revered creature in this part of the world. The lion has materialised itself from the door-knocker found on the secret doorway. Their journey takes them across the Himalayas, their breath taken away by the beauty and grandeur. You feel and hear this on 'Himalayan Sunset', an aural soundscape. At night they are confronted by the God Lord Shiva, and through the song 'Shivas Dance' he gives further messages relating to their quest on Mount Kailash. Initially, the guitars take on an Eastern/Indian theme which sounds right at home. Soon they are near their final destination 'Kailash - Jewel Of Ice', but before they can climb it, they must purify themselves by undertaking the circumambulation, that is, traversing the base of the mountain 13 times in a clockwise direction, along with scores of other pilgrims. 'The Wheel Of Life' sees the pair ascend the mountain in search of a mysterious cave, where it is found near the summit, 'Milarepa's Cave of Miracles' is where the sacred amulet/talisman is given to the traveller by the famous Tibetan yogi Milarepa, to take back to Lhasa. The amulet becomes the peace ('Merdeka') token that enables Tibet to return to its former glory, and the return from exile of the 14th Dalai Lama.

In Summary
The music is a deep excursion within the parameters of progressive rock. Like anything that is conceptual and deep, a few plays through the CD is required to get to the bottom of it all. The album is packaged as a lavish digipack too. Like the Vision Divine album previously mentioned, you should read up on the concept story that Hubi has put together. It is available as a PDF either on his website (URL above) or in our downloads area. The story-line is one that Chinese Authorities might frown on, considering their indifference and intolerance toward all things Tibetan. However, an album concept like this might make more people aware of Tibet's plight outside of China. You would think that this reads more like a script for a movie, who knows, with Hubi's abundance of ideas, I don't think it would be too long to expect an adventure of the cinematic kind - count on it. In the meantime, I'm still trying to get over the music.. fascinating stuff.

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#1 | 296 on March 17 2006 06:05:59
Hubi Meisel is brilliant and what a voice I love his work!
I have evderything he has ever done, I am a fan for lifeGrin
#2 | rkbluez on February 27 2011 21:13:42
Yeah Hubi is brilliant...and has a quite unique vocal style...I like the last album EmOcean a little better though...still great album with a bonus of incredible musicianship.
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