Greentrax Recordings
Greentrax Recordings

1986-2020: Celebrating Scotland's Music for over 30 Years

cover image for Mark Saul - Mixolydian
September 2004
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10 tracks: Prelude and Theme in E Minor * The Gateless Gate * Forget The Golden Rules * Journey To The Centre of The Celts * Beyond * A Dimension * Digital Breakdown * It’s An Instrument * Wicked Train of Thought * E Minor End Theme.

Mark Saul is a highly regarded solo and band piper from Australia whose compositions have already been picked up by other pipers. This album sees Mark playing his own compositions on the bagpipe with contemporary arrangements. Unashamedly wild but not technically woolly, this CD offers such off-beat wonders as banjo-and-bagpipe party time, and plenty more techno-trad, pipe-funk delights. Bagpipes, whistles, guitars, banjo, fiddle, and a musical fourth dimension. Recognised as one of the world’s most successful and respected contemporary composers of bagpipe music, Mark Saul is renowned for pushing the idiom into unprecedented realms. His compositions are continually being played and recorded by bands, folk groups and solo artists from around the world. Mark’s compositional talents emerged very early in his musical career, and soon he was winning solo bagpipe competitions playing his own works. Many of these early compositions were influenced, not only by bagpipe tunes, but also by his broader exploration of Celtic music, playing bagpipes, flute and tin whistle in numerous folk bands. In 1990, Mark’s reputation as both a skilled player and prolific composer led to an invitation to join the Victoria Police Pipe Band as a civilian member. This provided a forum for Mark’s compositions, while allowing him to further refine his compositional skills. By 1992, a large percentage of the Victoria Police Pipe Band’s competition and concert repertoire had been composed by Mark Saul, and their CD release Live In Concert In Ireland featured twenty of his tunes. ‘This is amazing stuff… inventive and sometimes downright crazy…’ (Living Tradition) ‘Mark Saul’s independent album follows along from Roddy MacDonald’s Good Drying in moving bagpipe music to a new dimension. Often we hear bagpipes being used to complement other great variations on this theme, but Mark Saul moves this to a new realm, blending bagpipes, electric guitars, banjos, low whistles and all other noises from the realms of electronic music together, in what I could only describe as Celtic electronic / techno / funk / house / rock.’ (George McEwan)

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