Persian Surgery Dervishes 2LP (Gatefold)
Aguirre LSS 04 / BEL / 2017
By the early 70s Riley had come to feel that scores were a distraction. Faithful interpretation of an already written piece was a deviation from the true purpose of making music, which was spiritual quest. Fortunately, some of those live performances, personal journeys towards a state of transcendence, were captured on tape. Persian Surgery Dervishes, issued initially on the French label Shandar, features two such concerts for electric organ and reel-to-reel delay, one recorded in Los Angeles on 18th April 1971, the other in Paris on 24th May 1972. His fluent and hypnotic keyboard playing can be heard as part of a continuum, transmitting energies from ancient and distant musical sources into the living here and now. Persian Surgery Dervishes is a significant part of that picture, a mesmerising record of a vital stage in Riley’s ongoing quest for connection with the universal mind and the sublime music that flows ceaselessly from it.