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REVIEW: NANO STERN - LOS ESPEJOS
Los Espejos

Nano Stern
Los Espejos

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Tony Hillier, Australia

Los Espejos mirrors Nano Stern’s passionate and engaging solo performances, with the
enhancement of simpatico accompaniment from Chilean compadres.

Andrew Cronshaw, Folk Roots, UK

When he sings you listen, even if you don't speak Spanish, because it feels like the truth.





The Melbourne Age Newspaper, Australia

...exudes authenticity and the sheer love of making music. All in all one of the concert
highlights of the year so far.

Paul Brandon

There is nothing more endearing for an audience member than watching a talented
performer crack jokes and charm the pants off you in your own language. He may have
been singing in Spanish, but we all knew exactly what he was saying. A wonderfully earthy
performance by a mesmerising guitarist and singer (who also plays a mean harmonic
flute!).

Jessica Nicholas, The Age 2010

REMEMBER those late-night TV ads for steak knives with all the extras? (But wait - there's more!). The show at the East Brunswick Club was a bit like that. Actually it was three shows squeezed into one, which lent a cheerfully chaotic feel to the whole affair.

The night began with a one-hour solo set from Nano Stern, a remarkable Chilean singer-songwriter whose irrepressible warmth and vitality make him a mesmerising performer. Foreign lyrics are no impediment to understanding the passionate joie de vivre he conveys in each phrase, epitomised by his celebratory song Un Gran Regalo.

Instead of a set break, we were then treated to a 45-minute puppet show by Slovenian artist Matija Solce, with Stern on guitar. This ingeniously devised tale of a puppet with writer's block turned into a hilarious dream-sequence featuring an intrepid snail, a hungry frog, a dim-witted cow and a frustrated matador, with Solce underlining the madcap action in expressive vocal effects.

For the evening's final set, Solce put down his puppets and took up an accordion, while Stern switched from guitar to fiddle and Slovakian flute. Together, Solce and Stern are known as the Folkoholics, re-interpreting (and in some cases reinventing) Balkan folk tunes with anarchic humour and barely controlled energy.

Solce's theatrical tendencies add a cartoonish element to the proceedings - complete with goggling eyes and gaping mouth - while the earthier Stern manages (just!) to keep the duo grounded. On Wednesday, the pair raced through traditional songs and dance tunes from Bulgaria, Macedonia, Estonia and Czechoslovakia, irresistible rhythms clinging to odd meters, exceptional musicianship lurking amid the high jinks.

As an experience, it was perhaps not as practical as a set of steak knives - fiddles and finger puppets are no match for a sharp blade - but it was a whole lot more fun.