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Jeffes: The Red Book [Neil Codling, Cass Browne, Darren Berry, Rebecca Waterworth] [Penguin Café: DPC104]

Penguin Cafe Orchestra Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
Price: £13.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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One day in the early 1970's, English composer Simon Jeffes was in the South of France, suffering from a terrible bout of food poisoning. He had a series of feverish waking dreams featuring a dystopian view of the near future, where all was grey and concrete.

People lived in huge grey blocks and one could see into the windows. In one room a couple was making love soundlessly and ... Read more in Amazon's Penguin Cafe Orchestra Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Jeffes: The Red Book [Neil Codling, Cass Browne, Darren Berry, Rebecca Waterworth] [Penguin Café: DPC104] + Penguin Cafe: A Matter Of Life + A History
Price For All Three: £46.27

Buy the selected items together
  • Penguin Cafe: A Matter Of Life £13.39
  • A History £19.13

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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 Feb 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Penguin Café
  • ASIN: B00HAV1J2K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 57,280 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Aurora
2. Solaris
3. Black Hibiscus
4. Bluejay
5. Radio Bemba
6. Catania
7. 1420
8. And Yet
9. Moonbo
10. Odeon
11. (The Roaring Of A) Silent Sun

Product Description

Product Description

The catalyst for the new recording came about when Arthur Jeffes worked on a project with the International Space Orchestra and NASA Ames in 2012, out of which came the pieces Aurora and 1420, which have since been beamed into space as part of NASA's Kepler project. These touchstones marked a 'satellitic' beginning for a new album, a collection of songs that would then return to earth to undertake a rich, cross-continental, musical journey.

Arthur Jeffes explains "The intention was really to create musical pictures and colourful soundscapes, channelling music and traditions from around the globe, but then possibly set through a more English filter. The first album, I think, was about establishing our own sound and identity, dusting out and re-opening the Cafe so to speak, but with The Red Book I think this is a grand new departure and ambition to sonically chart an imagined journey through the world and across the globe. I guess this would be the map of that idea."


The essence of what made Penguin Cafe Orchestra is here: the music is dreamlike and does indeed touch the heart of the listener. Yet Jeffes Jnr achieves this differently; compared to his father's work, which is full of enduring melodies that often verged on the experimental, this is more composed and less wild . That certainly doesn't mean it's as affecting, though. The spirit of Simon Jeffes lives on, but with a satisfying new dimension to it. He would be proud of Arthur no doubt.**** --Music.comh.com , March'14

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful 17 Feb 2014
Format:Audio CD
I heard a phrase recently, that music is what feelings sound like. Music from Penguin Cafe (Orchestra) fits this phrase perfectly, with beautiful emotive tracks. Arthur and his refreshed group continue to evolve the wonderful work of his father, creating an album that has a perfect blend of both the Penguin Cafe sound, and something new. The album starts with Aurora, a strident track of piano and strings (a version of which has been orchestrated for an orchestra of NASA space scientists, and then beamed into space!). Solaris continues in a similar vein of piano and strings, but with a gentler feel. Arthur mentioned at one of their live concerts that it's music to accompany a sunrise, and that sums it up perfectly. Black Hibiscus is a playful take on Chopin's Nocturne No. 20 in C Sharp Minor, morphing from a simplified original to something a lot more Latin American. Bluejay continues that playful sound, with a happy track set against an unusual time signature. Radio Bemba, Cuban for "word of mouth", is another jolly track that mixes up Latin American and African sounds, again playing around with the time signature. Catania has a quieter sound, and perhaps like the two preceding tracks, evokes that familiar Penguin Cafe sound. 1420 is another track that was beamed into space. 1420MHz represents the resonant frequency of Hydrogen on the electromagnetic spectrum, and connects back to SETI and the famous Wow! signal. In the track 1, 4, 2 and 0, are represented as notes that are played by various instruments, and blended into the track. And Yet... returns to a more classic sound, with some beautiful phrasing by the strings. Moonbo is a jauntier more strident track with more of a focus on the violins and viola. Read more ›
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A different type of cafe 26 Feb 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I have been listening to this CD solidly since it's arrival, and there is little doubt that it is a grower. Still, I must confess that despite my appreciation of the Red Book, there is no escaping a nagging and persistent tug of disappointment. This is a good album, but not (in my opinion) a great one. In deed, if I could do half-stars under this review system it would be a 3.5 out of 5.
Of course the son of Penguin Cafe is a different beast to the original orchestra, and that is how it should be. I don't mind the more intense, introverted and predominantly post-classical style that Jeffes Jnr is pursuing over the playful, folk/world fusions of the original outfit, but I do miss the melodies and hooks. This album has even less of the latter than the first new-look 'Penguin Cafe' record of a couple of years back.
As such, the Red a Book is a strong mood piece, but one very much in need of a melodic jolt. Buy it by all means, but don't expect the kind of joyful abandonments of yore. This really is a very different type of cafe, one that is far more muted.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a great addition 1 April 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is an okay release from Penguin Cafe, but, I suppose fairly logically, it lacks the quirkiness that Simon Jeffes brought to his compositions.

The late genius' son is working hard to preserve and develop the Penguin Cafe sound, and there is no questioning the quality of the playing. It's just that this is a sort of light classical album, not Penguin Cafe, in my view.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Album 22 April 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is a good addition to the Penguin Cafe collection and is clearly recognisable as by the group. It starts slowly then the music builds track by track throughout the album.
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