Bing Futch - "Sweet River"

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In 2008, Bing released his first Native American flute record "Kokopelli Rising" and it became an instant favorite with fans of his music.  Now, seven years later, comes "Sweet River", a bold and adventurous creation that dances on both traditional and progressive ground.  Kicking off with the title track, one of Bing's most requested tunes, "Sweet River" begins in much the same way as its predecessor; with Native American flute and mountain dulcimer combining to form a lovely tapestry of joy and wonder.  Then, solo flute pieces allow this 4,000 year old instrument to sing in the manner in which it was originally intended with "On The Seminole Road" and "Ghost Dog Of Loachapoka."

From there, however, a musical twist emerges and, soon, listeners are caught up in an otherworldly mash-up of styles ranging from the Indonesian flavors of "The Vision" to Greek-inspired celebration ("Hopi Opa Groove Machine") to East Indian flute battles with percussion ("Tabla For Two.")  And there, the journey is just beginning to dash around the world as Bing audaciously takes the Native American flute and places it in some surprising arrangements including Japanese anime pop ("Cat-Girl At Katsura Grill") and a contemporary rock arrangement of "Amazing Grace."  There's also the simple-yet-powerful meditation of "Earth Mother" and an epic tour de force climax that's equal parts electronic dance music and cinematic space epic called "Fallen Angel."

For lovers of Native American flute and Bing's music, "Sweet River" is a truly illuminated flight of fantasy that knows no borders and targets the sky while keeping bare feet firmly planted on terra firma.