Nano Stern's Los Espejos.

By Matthew Owens

Los Espejos is the third outing from Chilean Nano (Fernando) Stern who forms part of the so called new Chilean wave of musicians. A mature and intelligent album Los Espejos has earned Stern international acclaim and was placed at #3 in Rolling Stone Chile’s best new album 2009 list. Nano is a true musician’s musician playing guitar (Spanish and electric) piano, violin among other instruments (e.g. the willow flute). It was probably this album that launched him into both national and international fame alongside fellow Chilean singer Camila Moreno. The opening track Ópticas Ilusiones is an existential, reflective and pensive piece pondering on the nature of Being that is known (or not known) through optical (eyes) illusions (“look into my eyes and tell me what you see”). It is poignant and at times tinged with sorrow but at the same time wonderfully optimistic; a duality that probably well-describes Nano’s style on the album. The guitar solo is both brilliantly executed and zestful in its refreshment. Although Nano is clearly influenced by Chilean great Victor Jara and Violeta Parra (he devoted a song, “dos cantores” to the pair) there is much much more in the mix, including hints of Southern States Country/Gaelic folk/Mapuche tradition (Por ti), Rock (Mal De Altura); at times there is a soulful seam cutting through the sonosphere that is reminiscient of England’s Nick Drake. From the jazzy teje que teje, to the uplifting Azul, the melancholy Los Juegos and Canto al Aire, Nano Stern takes us through the full range of emotions. Los Espejos from the well-travelled multi-instrumentalist Nano Stern is a wonderfully soulful album and a great place to start with Chilean music. Track 8 from the album El Amanecer is a powerful and hauntingly reflective ode to the dawn:

Hace tantas horas ya
Que se puso el sol
Y la noche oscura esta
Ya no veo na.Cuéntame otro cuento más
No puedo dormir
Cuéntame de tu país
Cuéntame de ti

El amanecer
Se lleva con su luz mi oscuridad
El amanecer
Me trae con su paz la claridad

Hace tantas horas ya
Que se puso el sol
Y la noche oscura esta
Ya no veo na.

Las estrellas que se ven
Giran y se van
Sobre un eje universal
Como un espiral

El amanecer
Se lleva con su luz mi oscuridad
El amanecer
Me trae con su paz la claridad

El amanecer
Se lleva con su luz mi oscuridad
El amanecer
Me trae con su paz la claridad

Many hours have passed
Since the sun has set
And the dark night is here
Now I see nothing.Tell me another story
I can’t sleep
Tell me about your country
Tell me about yourself

The Dawn
You take away my darkness with your light
The Dawn
You bring me clarity with your peace

Many hours have passed
Since the sun has set
And the dark night is here
Now I see nothing.

The stars come out
They spin and are gone
Around a universal axis
Like a spiral

The Dawn
You take away my darkness with your light
The Dawn
You bring me clarity with your peace

The Dawn
You take away my darkness with your light
The Dawn
You bring me clarity with your peace

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