Kék Láng (Blue Flame) preserves the living musical legacy of its ancestors. The only instruments used to accompany its polyphonic singing style are spoons, metal milk jugs, pot lids and, occasionally, violin and guitar. The performers round out the rhythm by snapping their fingers, clapping their hands and stomping their feet.
The roots of Romany music and dance in their most authentic form – this is the fourteen-member ensemble Kek Lang from the village of Nyirvasvári in eastern Hungary. The 200 members of the Romany community there belong to the nomadic Olah clan, which settled in this area during the 1950s. The group first came to international attention by appearing at the "Gypsies of the World" Festival.
The gypsy families whose members make up the group Kék Láng were discovered when Tony Gatlif was making his film Latcho Drom. They all come from a little village near Nyírbátor in the eastern part of Hungary, where the songs still reek of mud, woodsmoke, bad vodka and loud swearwords. In typically Romany style this mixed group sings surprisingly complex folk music accompanied by accordion and guitar with jug or spoon used as percussion. It is essential to free oneself of all musical logic to enjoy these gypsy songs. The reward is there if one lets oneself go and be drawn into the music, with all its emotional turmoil, its chaotic undertones, both festive and naive, without any trace of bitterness. The music is a sort of challenge thrown out against the cold-heartedness of modern industrialized society and its technology.
01. Memeiga (First Version)
02. Bolond Asszony
03. Drago Szanasz Manghe
04. Ternyi Pomnyi Telo Podo
05. Telo Podo
06. Ando Ghio Ando Foro
07. Nani, Nani
08. Szigyarenke Tele Phidel
09. Csinta, Csinta Palacsinta
11. Kea Devla Soke Tera
12. Blowin In The Wind (D'apres Bob Dylan)
13. Sorpajipi Lulugyi
14. Memeiga (Second Version)
Malicorne was founded by Gabriel Yacoub and Marie Yacoub in 1974. It is also the name of a French town, famous for its porcelain and faience. Since several of their albums are called simply Malicorne it had become the custom to refer to them by number, even though no number appears on the cover. Malicorne 1 consisted of the Yacoubs, Laurent Vercambre and Hughes de Courson. The combination of electric guitar, violin, dulcimer, bouzouki and female vocalist immediately brings to mind Steeleye Span, their English equivalent, thus placing them squarely in the electric folk genre. The four of them were masters of twelve instruments. Their first four albums consisted of mostly traditional French folk songs, with one or two songs by Gabriel Yacoub and one or two instrumentals per album. Again like Steeleye Span, they occasionally sang group harmonies a cappella.
Malicorne's second album was and might even be the best in a series of powerful studio albums. Stylistically similar to the first album but infinitely more mature, the quartet was already moving in a more compositionally interesting direction by infusing the traditionals with multi-instrumental arrangements of great thought. The use of the crumhorn in the classic "Le Mariage Anglais" brings the music closer to what Gryphon was creating across the channel, a similarity solidified when Brian Gulland later joined the group. The diversity here is exquisite, including a somber ballad ("La Fille aux Chansons"), an a capella piece ("Marion les Roses"), a lively instrumental ("J'ai Vu le Loup, le Renard et la Belette") and much more. Already, Malicorne were starting to incorporate electric instruments into the mix to good effect, pushing this, their second album, even closer to progressive areas. The arrangements, tracking choice and sheer musical quality makes this one of the best folk albums of the 70s.
"Simply put, this is one of the best recordings of French medieval music. If you like medieval music get this disk without delay! It is obvious that Gabriel Yacoub and company love this music and play it with such tender passion it is almost as if they were making love to their instruments.
For those not familiar with Malicorne, they are a bit like Pentangle without the jazz and blues influence. Traditional instruments, along with guitar and tasteful percussion transport the listener to a magical sanctuary where one may meet the Ancestors of the Foretime. The singing of Gabriel and his wife are perfect beyond description. This is timeless stuff and sings directly to the human soul whether or not one speaks French.
Get this cd and Colin, which are Malicornes' firt two recordings and their most traditional. You really cannot go wrong with this disk. Vive Malicorne!"
01. Le Mariage Anglais
02. Le Garçon Jardinierme Lombarde
03. La Fille Aux Chansons ( Marion S'y Promène )
04. J'ai Vu Le Loup, Le Renard Et La Belette
05. Cortège De Noce
06. Branle La Peronelle
07. Le Galant Indiscret
08. Marions Les Roses
09. Suite Bourrée, Scottish-Valse
10. Le Bouvier
Gabriel Yacoub (acoustic and electric guitar, epinette de Vosges, vocals)
Marie Yacoub (electric dulcimer, bouzouki, hurdy-gurdy, vocals)
Laurent Vercambre (violin, bouzouki, psaltery, harmonium, mandolin, vocals)
Hughes de Courson (electric guitar, bass, crumhorn, percussion, vocals)
North America’s Preeminent Hungarian Folk Music Ensemble.
The Életfa Hungarian Folk Band is from the New Jersey/New York area. The Ensemble treats its audiences to a high-energy, entertaining tour of Hungary’s folk music, song and dance culture, guided throughout by engaging narrative and demonstrations. The group’s members specialize in and present the authentic, archaic folklore from the villages of present-day Hungary, Transylvania, Romania, Slovakia and beyond, delivered in a style suitable for Western audiences. The members of Életfa are all driven by their love and respect for Hungarian folk music and dance, the importance in preserving Hungarian dance, music and culture in North America, and the dedication to performing and spreading the joy of music, song and dance.
Életfa played at Lincoln Center with the New York Philharmonic in a "Behind the Music" program featuring the music of Brahms, hosted by actor Alec Baldwin. Életfa has also performed as part of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's community-oriented program.
The band has appeared in cities throughout North America, including Austin, New Orleans, Sarasota, Toronto, San Francisco, Columbus, Ottawa, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Montreal, Houston, Washington, D.C., Miami, Boston, Calgary and Cleveland.
The group has appeared with several well-known Hungarian artists, including Kálmán Balogh, János Csik, András Berecz, Dénes Hruz, Zsuráfszky Zoltán, and Ferenc Tobak. Életfa has accompanied top dance groups of the United States and Canada and has played for audiences at countless festivals, camps, workshops, and solo performances. The ensemble has played live on WFMU (91.1 FM) in New Jersey and has received considerable airplay on U.S. and Hungarian radio, including on WNYC (93.9 FM).
“For over thirteen years Életfa has enjoyed success throughout America, and the CD Gyökereink shows why: from the authentic violin-based group sound to classic Hungarian folk stylings, Életfa has traditional Hungary down pat. Some players are born in the US and some in Hungary, but no matter where their source, the sound is authentic and lively, packed with folk spirit….The band plays for Hungarian enclaves around the U.S. – catch them if you can, Életfa spends a lot of time on the road, touring the country.”
“The Hungarian-Americans in Életfa perform traditional music and dance from Hungary and Transylvania. Playing centuries-old music that retains a celebratory immediacy, the group….sounds ageless and in the moment all at once.”
“An absolutely compelling and zesty album featuring the village music from Hungary and Transylvania by this New Jersey-based group. Being the most recognized Hungarian folk band in North America, 'who have kept people klicking their heels and slapping their feet for nearly two decades,’ the Életfa Hungarian Folk Band delivers with pure, shining musicianship.”
01. Lőrincrévi emlékek
02. Magyarnemegyei muzsika
04. Széki ballada
05. Marosszéki dalok
06. Mérai cigánycsárdás
07. Gyimesi kerekes es magyaros
11. Árpádhoni szüreti mulatság
12. Mezőkölpényi dalok
13. Nem úgy van most mint volt régen
15. Kalotaszegi búcsúzás
Katalin Harsáczki (“Kata”) - vocals
Ildikó Hajdu-Németh (“Ildi”) - violin, vocals
László Hajdu-Németh (“Laci”) - kontra (3-string viola)
József Gartai (“Heki”)- cimbalom and kontra (3-string viola)
Raul Rothblatt (“Raci”) - 3-string bass, string cello, percussive cello
Attila Papp (“Acsi”) - 3-string bass, percussive cello
Kalman Magyar (“Öcsi”) - violin, viola, trumpet-violin, various folk instruments
This release represents the diverse roster of artists on the Hungarian label Periferic Records. Folk, World, Ethno-World, whatever you want to call it, it is all great music and a great introduction to what is happening both in the folk and more contemporary field of music in Hungary today. Some familiar names and some new ones, all however exploring the rich heritage of Hungarian Folk Music.
"While editing this CD I thought a label needs to have a compilation CD like this, because this is a simple and good way to represent the activity of Periferic Records. Compiling one song after the other it became more and more clear for me that this CD will not provide only promotional purposes. Simply it is good to listen to the compositions. I hope many music lovers feel as I feel: these songs are all fantastic pieces of the last one or two years. I hope you are going to listen to the music with such appriciations as I have felt pleasure for compiling and releasing this CD."
01. Lux – Túl a vizen egy kosár
02. Karikás – Hová mész?
03. Kormorán – Magyar rapszódia
04. Hungarian World Music Orchestra – Come Danube
05. Attacca – Addig babám
06. Ágoston Trió – Iafia
07. Bokros – Pista bácsi
08. Dűvő - Tánczene
09. Vasmalom – Gergelytánc
10. Khanci Dos – Na Dara Chajorrije
11. Vujicsics – Nile Sala
12. Binder Károly – Pünkösdi rózsa
13. Om Art Formation – Bulgaristan
14. Dobos Gyula – New Pangea
"Di Naye Kapelye is the band formed by American-of-Hungarian-ancestry Bob Cohen who headed off to visit the land whence came his parents many years ago, and never left.
The band consists of Bob, fellow American Yankl Falk to represent the Left Coast, and the best local musicians he can find. Given that Bob has been traveling through the wilds of Eastern Europe for decades, jamming and collecting songs, this makes for quite a wild, skilled ensemble. The repertoire, of course, is of the region—songs from all over Eastern Europe from folk tunes to Hasidic nigunim to Communist-era propaganda (hence the title and wonderful Soviet-style graphic on the front cover). This may be the only klezmer album ever recorded that includes Hasidic nign and 1950s Romanian communist ode to the Yiddish tractor—the title track.
Even as I try to put this music into some type of box to describe it, the boxes keep breaking. Listen to Michael Alpert wailing on "A briv fun Yisroel", another 1950s-era Yiddish communist ode, and then a few minutes later the kaval-like vioră cu goarnă. You got your wild hutsul music. You got your token 1915 Americanish klezmer tune (later a hit from Naftule Brandwein). You got cantor Yankl Falk's wonderful voice perfect on an Arkady Gendler tune, "Pirim." You have the gang—even 13-year-old Aron Cohen takes a solo— on "Az nisht keyn emine (one of the aforementioned hasidic nigunim). You have some of the most divine string ensemble playing, featuring an orchestra of instruments from tsimbl to viola, that you'll hear anywhere. Heck, one village band wasn't enough. They pull in whole village band of Tjaciv to supplement the regulars.
The repertoire leave no part of Eastern Europe unscathed. There is even yet another recording of "Mashke," one of the band's signature tunes, even better than the previous recordings—Meyshke and Yankl are in top form here. Then they return the favor and close the album with Alpert's "Chernobyl," one of my favorite contrafactas (a melody applied to new words; this one many of us know better by the chorus, "hu tsa tsa"), an absolutely brilliant bit of writing by Alpert first recorded on the first Brave Old World album (an album that I still travel with). In Yiddish, the lyrics equate the Chernobyl hasidim, and their radiance-based mysticism, with the radiance of the local nuclear power plant disaster of not so long ago.
I fear I slight the instrumentals, but only because I don't know where to begin. It's the band and their friends and amazing people they meet along the way. Especially notable is the "Hutsul Medley," which was, unfortunately, the last recording session for tsimbl player Misu Csernavec, who passed away only a few months later. And, as I mentioned caval earlier, there is a wonderful dance tune titled simply, "Modavian Caval," part of a medley attached to a doina-ish folk tune, "Pastekhl." The piece also features the cimpoi (Moldavian bagpipe).
Bob, Yankl, and the band create magic. There are other great bands playing music from this region, but Cohen has a sense of breadth and balance that make Di Naye Kapelye concerts and recordings always exciting, always breathtaking. This isn't just this week's amazing batch of hutsul music; it's this week's amazing batch of hutsul music in context … a wonderous melange of music that best represents the mixed up world in which we live and makes it better. If I call this a "must have" CD I am being redundant, but I'll do it anyway."
01. Nit Bay Motyen
03. Pastekhl Moldavian Caval
04. Schwartz's Sirba A Briv Fun Yisroel
05. Baj Van Medley
06. Az Nisht Keyn Emine
07. Hamanul From Dragomiresti
08. Uncle Arpi's Nokh A Bisl
10. Sadegurer Hosid
11. Hutsul Medley
14. Moldvai Zhok
Bob Cohen: violin, vocals, koboz, mandolin, Carpathian drum, vioră cu goarnă (Stroh fiddle), cimpoi (Moldavian bagpipe)
Yankl Falk: vocals, clarinet
Antal (Puma) Fekete: kontra, Carpathian drum
Gyula (Kosztya) Kozma: bass
Ferenc Pribojszki: cimbalom, caval, Carpathian drum
with special guests:
Michael (Meyshke) Alpert: vocals, violin, percussion (3, 4, 6, 12)
Aron Cohen: vocals (6)
Josh Dolgin: accordion, piano (4, 10)
Tom Popper & Imre "Kutyuli" Keszthelyi: chorus vocals (12)
The village band from Técső (Tjaciv), Carpatho-Ukraine:
Joska Csernavec: bayan accordion
Misu Csernavec: tsymbaly
Jura Csernavec: drum, plonka, voice
Ivan Popovics: violin
(5, 11, 15, 16)
Synthesis combines the roots of Macedonian folk music heritage with contemporary arrangements, using full range of original Macedonian instruments, like kaval, gaida, zurla, tapan, tarabuka and tambura.
Powerful and explosive, Synthesis is the most exported Macedonian world music project.
The band was established in 1995. for the purpose of carrying out an in-depth pursuit of the outstanding folk music treasures of Macedonia. The name "Synthesis" was chosen to express the concept of the group, which is to combine traditional sounds with contemporary arrangements to create a musical Synthesis. Digging deeply into the roots of Macedonian folk heritage, with a serious concern for the basics of traditional compositions, the group has received high praise for breathing new life in this milieu.
The melancholic voyages of Synthesis, with the full emotional power of the heritage and the typical complexity of Macedonian rhythms should not be missed by any Balkan music fan. Macedonia has finally uncovered a contemporary world music project! The group uses the full range of original Macedonian instruments: kaval, gaida, zurla, tapan, tarabuka and tambura. The line-up consists of three young lady singers, skillfully handling the local vocal tradition, of a keyboard player, two percussionists, tambura player and, of course, kaval, gaida or zurla on the front. Special mention has to be made here of the fact that while the majority of the traditional groups in Macedonia are amateurs, this band is made up of professional musicians.
In recognition of the great contribution Synthesis has made for the affirmation of Macedonian music and culture through its numerous concerts all over the world (Japan, Israel, the United States, Italy, France, and many others), in 2006 the Macedonian Chamber of Commerce pronounced the band its Honorary Ambassador of Macedonian Culture.
Synthesis carries on with the treatment of old, forgotten, and sometimes almost never heard songs, which are part of the rich Macedonian musical heritage, which, like Macedonian culture, has a long and enduring tradition.
01. Goceva 3
02. Sam legnuvam
03. Blazena goro zelena
04. Gajdarska igra
06. Dva vermana
07. Bela Petkana
08. Jana Malesevka
Goce Dimovski: kaval, gaida, zurla
Vane Jovchev: piano
Marjan Jovanovski: tambura
Goce Uzunski: tapan, tarabuka
Radoslav Shutevski: drums, percusión
Aneta Shulankovska: vocals
Biljana Ristovska: vocals
Mirjana Josheska: vocals
Like Billie Holiday, the Cape Verdean queen of morna - a slow, rhythmically balladic blend of African blues and the Portuguese fado - asked heartache to come in and set a spell. In fact, trouble and Cesaria Evora are longtime soulmates. This 1992 album (released in the U.S. in 1998) about nostalgia, longing, hit-and-run lovers, and the sea features titles like "Barbincour" ("The Conman") and "Torura" ("Torture". It went gold in France, transforming the plump grandma diva of her West African island's beachside canteens into a world-music icon. Not the least of Evora's magical appeal is that those smooth, honey-rich vocals suggest a universe of passion and pain, with nary a spasm of self-pity to break the spell.
"Ravishing is the word that springs to the lips: one of those tiresome British understatements, but it'll have to do. Evora has the most glorious voice, the melodies are heartrendingly Portuguese, the guitar-runs have escaped from a fado recording. The classic piano and string group of Miss Perfumada help explain its near-bestselling status, the near-Brazilian rhythms add the zip that tops the whole thing off."
03. Cumpade Ciznone
04. Direito Di Nasca
05. Luz Dum Estrela
07. Miss Perfumado
08. Vida Tem Un So Vida
11. Lua Nha Testemunha
Césaria Évora: Vocals, Main Performer
Teofilo Chantre: Vocals (Background), Translation, Choir, Chorus
Celina Pereira: Vocals (Background), Choir, Chorus
Titina: Vocals (Background), Choir, Chorus
Paulino Vieira: Guitar (Acoustic), Arranger, Percussion, Piano, Vocals (Background), Harmonica, Cavaquinho, Producer, Choir, Chorus
Toy Vieira: Guitar (Acoustic), Choir, Chorus, Piano, Cavaquinho, Vocals
"For over two decades, Howe Gelb has worked doggedly and double-time to make it all but impossible to get a good bead on him. In fact, while any number of prominent musicians and artists have joined his orbit, it's still unclear what musical planet Gelb lives on. So goes life in the Arizona desert, where Gelb, both solo and with his ongoing band Giant Sand, has endeavored to make the dust you blow off an LP every bit as important as the music itself.
The ongoing success and evolution of Giant Sand spin-off Calexico may do Gelb no favors in comparison, but the guy clearly doesn't need any. For something as seemingly unfocused as Giant Sand, the band's been remarkably consistent, and proVISIONS is no exception, its array of peyote rock, twilight ballads, space cowboy soundtracks, and spooky sidetracks off the beaten path on par with the band's best work. Still, Gelb doesn't hedge his bets, studding the start of the disc with a string of conspicuous ringers, including appearances by Neko Case ("Without a Word"), Isobel Campbell ("Stranded Pearl"), and M. Ward, whose debut Duet for Guitars #2 was released by Gelb on his OW OM label ("Can Do"). Another track, "The Desperate Kingdom of Love", was written by pal Polly Jean Harvey.
Gelb's no dummy. He knows these famous names will help newcomers pierce his self-adorned cloak of mystery. At the same time, Giant Sand's always been such an informal affair that he also knows that none of these friends will overshadow the music, which is comfortable hanging back in the shadows, anyway. It's there that you'll hear such touches as the return of the Voices of Praise Choir, veterans of 'Sno Angel Like You on "Spiral", or the occasional presence of singer Henriette Sennenvaldt of the somewhat obscure Danish band Under Byen.
Gelb has called Giant Sand "a mood," and that's sure true on cinematic songs such as "Increment of Love" and "Pitch & Sway". Later the loose funk of "Muck Machine", "Saturated Beyond Repair", and the stumbling, obliquely soulful "Belly Full of Fire" find Gelb more forceful and groove-oriented. The latter in particular showcases his unwavering gift for subverting his own strengths, disarming the hooky chorus with an off-kilter arrangement that doesn't sound like it could ever be replicated exactly as is.
It's there in the words, too, where Gelb's lyrics hint at (or overtly reference) Bob Dylan at his most surreal or Tom Waits at his most perplexing, offering wisdom through weirdness and winking wordplay. "Molecule, Molly is nobody's fool/ Comes from an excellent gene pool/ Happy little cells flippin' from her lip and/ Spend the night here screaming for the mother ship/ I ride along surfing on the waves of a lava hip," sings Gelb in "Increment of Love". Such inscrutability can be a real chore in the wrong hands, but with Gelb, getting lost has always been part of the fun. It's not about the destination. It's about the trip."
01. Stranded Pearl
02. Without A Word
03. Can Do
04. Out There
05. Desperate Kingdom Of Love
06. Increment Of Love
08. Pitch & Sway
09. Muck Machine
10. Belly Full Of Fire
11. Saturated Beyond Repair
12. World's End State Park [Wordless]
13. Well Enough Alone
Thøger T. Lund - Bass
Anders Pederson - Guitar/Slide
Howe Gelb - Guitar/Vocals/Keyboards/Shovel
Peter Dombernowsky - Drums/Percussion
Specialty of the record is that we can discover a new side of Mihály Dresch, a giant of home jazz as member of the Csík Group. We can see that he is just as excellent in playing authentic folkmusic as he is in improvising when there is space for it.
1. "Boldog szomorú dal" / Happy Sad Song - Music for escorting the bride.
2. Magyarszováti furulya muzsika / Flute Music From Magyarszovát
3. Összerázás és négyes / Shaking And Dance For Two Couples From Magyarszovát
4. Román népzene Erdélybõl / Romanian Folk Music From Transylvania
5. Alföldi nóták / Tunes From The Great Plain
6. Hallgató és magyar csárdás / Listening Tune And Hungarian Csárdás From Heves County, Hungary
7. Szórakoztató muzsika / "Light music" From Erdõszombattelke, Northern Mezõség
8. Bogártelki hajnali csárdás és sebescsárdás / Lament (music played at dawn), Csárdás And Fast Csárdás From Bogártelke
9. Halotti mars / Funeral March From Gyimesközéplok
János Csík - violin, voice
Tibor Mészáros - violin
Mariann Majorosi - voice
Mihály Dresch Dudás - flute, saxophone
Zoltán Nagy - cimbalom
Lóránt Vass - viola, kontra
Tibor Csente - double bass
Tamás Kunos - kontra, viola
Róbert Liber - viola
Ferencz Németh - voice
One year after making the above statement, Mihály Dresch's idea materialized and he has made perhaps his best recording yet. Like Coltrane... This is Hungarian ethno-jazz!
1. Gyimesi Impressziók / Gyimes Impressions
2. Bánat, bánat... / Sorrow, Sorrow…
3. Remény / Hope
4. Rákóczi révészem... / Rákóczi My Ferryman…
5. Hungarian Be-Pop
6. Elballagok / I’ll Saunte
Mihály Dresch “Dudás” – saxophones, flutes, cimbalom, vocal
András Berecz – voice
Róbert Benkő – double bass
Tamás Geröly – drums, percussions
Ferenc Kovács - violin
"While the term "Southern gothic" has become a shorthand description for the Sixteen Horsepower sound, Folklore suggests that the group has embraced the tag. They've redefined their brooding tone by constructing a ruined sonic landscape populated with sullen figures searching not for redemption but catharsis. Filled with murder ballads and tales of sin and redemption, Folklore is the sound of a sinner chasing away both the demons that torment him and the loved ones who fail to see that he has been haunted and changed. That stressful balance is embodied by David Eugene Edwards' wailing vocals, which remain a stunning hybrid of Gram Parsons' white-collar cowboy and Tom Waits' avant-garde crooner. Folklore is the dark side of Americana, almost completely devoid of the hopeful inflections that render so much of that musical tradition life-affirming.
Nearly half of the songs on Folklore are traditional compositions re-arranged and given new life by Edwards and company, which is a testament to 16HP's ability to craft such unique and absorbing atmospheres and textures from tunes that have been available for generations. The propulsive dirge of "Blessed Persistence" is a ghastly torch song, combining elements as diverse as the Violator-era atmospherics of Depeche Mode, the minimalist string arrangements of Rachel's and the stylized guitar sounds of Ennio Morricone's most famous spaghetti-western soundtracks. Imagine an exhausted Robert Plant fronting a vocal interpretation of Labradford's Mi Media Naranja and you'll begin to understand the depth and complexity of the track. Similarly, "Outlaw Song" recalls the dynamism of Zeppelin III, sprite acoustic instrumentation colliding with swelling bass sounds and galloping rhythms. Meanwhile, the raucous, foot-stomping sing-along "Single Girl" (a Carter Family composition) and the album-closing "La Robe a Parasol" are uptempo, uplifting numbers that stand in relief from Folklore's otherwise dark lyrics and sombre instrumentation. The dissonant interplay of violin and banjo on many of the tracks evokes contemporaries like Dirty Three and Palace, their decidedly modern perspective on loss and loneliness informing the timeless aura of the tunes. Each track is strong enough to stand on its own, yet fits with precision into the overall structure of the this Old Testament-fashioned epic.
Revealing itself slowly, like the mythic tales acknowledged by the album's title, Folklore is certainly Sixteen Horsepower's most stunning and accomplished work yet, and an easy nominee for one of 2002's best."
01. Hutterite Mile
02. Outlaw Song
03. Blessed Persistence
04. Alone and Forsaken
05. Single Girl
06. Beyond the Pale
07. Horse Head Fiddle
10. La Robe a Parasol
David Eugene Edwards: vocals, banjo, mandolin, bazuki, saz, nylon guitar
Jean-Yves Tola: percussion
Pascal Humbert: vocals and double bass
"Chirgilchin is from the republic of Tuva in Russia, west of Mongolia. It was created in 1996 when the three musicians were still 18 (the girl) and 20 years old (the two boys). This is their first CD and a remarkable one at that. The particularity of Tuvan music is throat singing (also called sometimes diphonic singing), found in many Asian countries, but in ways that are found solely in Tuva. Throat singing is a way of using the throat to produce two sounds or notes at the same time with the voice (these notes being harmonics produced by the throat). Tuvans developed five different ways of producing these sounds. Ondar Mongun-ool, the throat singer, shows at his young age an incredible mastery of this so particular and amazing way of singing. These three young musicians are simply mesmerizing. What they offer on this CD are not only songs and beautiful music, but a part of themselves, of who they are through their music."
01. Homudal - Man's Sad Song
02. Darlaashkyn - Freedom Song
03. Borannadyr Solo
05. Chirgilchin - Mirage
06. Kozhai - Aidysmaa Kandans Native Land
07. Kara Duruya - Black Crane
08. Majalykta Chylgymmy - Lyric Song
09. Kyrgan Boru - The Wolf And The Kid
10. Kolkhozchu Maen - Collective Farmer
11. Khaian - Girls From Ulug - Khema
12. Erge Chokka Choranymny - Woman Without Rights
14. Ak-La Bashtyg Avaiymny - Whitehaired Mother
15. Teve - Khaya - Camel - Rock
16. Oshku Dotpeleer
Ondar Mongun-ool (vocals, morin-khuur, chantzy, doshpulur, sygyt, sygyt khomei kargyraa, sygyt khomei bell, igil)
Aidysmaa Kandan (vocals, tungur)
Tamdyn Aldar (igil)
Additional personnel: Alexander Bapa (guitar)
"Few people know that the first Jews in North America came to New York on a boat from Recife, Brazil 350 years ago. Marking the Semiseptcentennial of this momentous occasion, Frank London's Klezmer Brass All Stars' Carnival Conspiracy: In the Marketplace All is Subterfuge (released by PIRANHA Musik/Harmonia Mundi) brings the spirit and aesthetic of Brazilian carnival together with the street sounds of Brass Band and Klezmer in the celebration of what London calls "the original New York Jewish music." Forty artists from eight countries and four continents meet in this 'band that's not a band.' The group will be kicking off New York's globalFEST in January.
Carnival is intended to subvert. Mikhail Bakhtin, the Russian granddaddy theorist of the "carnivalesque" (both the description of a historical phenomenon of carnival and the name he gave to a certain literary tendency), proclaimed that the purpose of carnival is to liberate the masses. During the great carnivals of Medieval Europe, and their later manifestations in Latin America and the Caribbean, the period of carnival served to temporarily reverse the social order, shake things up, and shock people into new ways of experiencing the world. This philosophy was not lost on Frank London. References abound in Carnival Conspiracy: Bakhtin, Rabelais (the French patron saint of carnivalesque literature), and George Clinton are invoked in the liner notes, laying out a feast for the intellectual, for the tongue-in-cheek cultural critic, as much as for the layman, the booty shaker and the Hasid. Ever the trickster, London and his merry band take listeners on a wild ride.
Carnival Conspiracy is indeed a kind of musical travelogue. Just when you think you are hearing a traditional Klezmer song on "Midnight Banda Judía," in come the sounds of Bavarian beer hall and a Mexican banda, and a song that starts with Brave Old World's Michael Alpert singing in Yiddish ends in Spanish. Then, when you think you have gotten a handle on the traditional beats of Eastern European wedding songs mixed with the Brazilian beats of New York Maracatú, suddenly you are lost in the echoing loops of a dubby version of "A Time of Desire," a traditional tune arranged by Frank London and remixed by Brooklyn-based Curha ("a multi-instrumental electronic music creator who thrives on deconstructions and reconstructions of everyday noise"). Once you stop trying to locate yourself in the origins and philosophy of the album and its references, you throw up your hands, dance a samba-hora jig, and find yourself lost in the transnational frenzy of joy and ecstasy that is the essence of carnival.
Get ready˜the cover art should prepare you for the ride inside. Deliciously carnival inspired drawings by Belgium-based artist and klezmer violinist Richard Kenigsman pick up the same themes close to Frank London's heart: traditional Jewish culture seen both on its own terms and through a radical-feminist-populist-revolutionary-sacred-as-profane-and-vice-versa lens.
Humorously rumored to be a troupe of drunkards that invented Klezmer, the "Inebriated Orchestra" is busted on this album as a sober group who are serious about shaking things up with wit and wisdom. But when the bubble of hype bursts, you are left with the fact that this music intoxicates. Carnival Conspiracy invites transcendence on all levels; it will make you dance past your critical mind, laugh yourself into liberation, and reconsider the meaning of Jewish music. Of all the CDs recorded by Frank London's Klezmer Brass Allstars, this is by far the third."
01. In Your Garden Twenty Fecund Fruit Trees
02. Oh Agony, You Are So Sweet Like Sugar I Must To Eat You Up
03. Another Glass Of Wine To Give Succor To My Ailing Existence
04. Midnight Banda Judía
05. In The Marketplace All Is Subterfurge
06. Who Knows One
07. Pantagruel, Shiker Hindert Prozent
08. A Time Of Desire - Curha Mix
09. Our Ancestors Forty Thousand Years Wide
10. Out Of What
11. Mi Yamalay
12. Borracho #1 The Cobbles In The Street Moan For You
Frank London, trumpet, peck horn
Susan Hoffman Watts, trumpet
Merlin Shepherd, clarinet
Matt Darriau, clarinet, saxophone
Alex Kontorovich, clarinet, saxophone
Curtis Hasselbring, trombone, skronk guitar
Jacob Garchik, baritone horn, trombone
Ron Caswell, tuba
Mark Rubin, tuba, baritone horn, tex-mex guitar
Aaron Alexander, drums)
various featured performers with assisting musicians.
"Listening to “Gipsy Love” (i.e., “Cigányszerelem”) by Kalyi Jag ... one begins to understand how the Roma managed to survive for centuries without a country of their own: through passionate expression of their music. Transcending time and politics, music expressed the Roma way of life like nothing else could, since they traveled from place to place. Kalyi Jag brings to life the full Gipsy spirit: they sing of cruel fate, lost love, poverty, infidelity and jealousy. They sing about a simple way of life: selling horses at the fair and the thoughts and feelings of being a knife-grinder, who wanders from village to village plying his trade. They sing about a son who abandons the straight and narrow life, breaking his mother’s heart, and about the son who brings pleasure to his young wife by playing music on his guitar. The rhythms are universally Gipsy and Balkan-like, they do not resemble any of the Hungarian popular music know as “nota” which is often played by Gipsy bands in restaurants in Hungary. Although Kalyi Jag uses a few modern instruments, like the guitar, they provide traditional percussion using hollow milk cans and other common utensils, such as spoons or vocalization. The harmonies are typical Roma .. they are hauntingly familiar to anyone who enjoys Balkan music, because so many ”traditional” Balkan sounds incorporate them into their village music. This is understandable as the Gypsies have wandered into and out of all the countries in Eastern Europe ... some settled down into ghettos in the cities or segregated sections of villages, maintaining their unique identity and way of life for centuries.
Most gypsies today, can be categorized by where they live: either city-dwellers (urban gypsies) or rural dwellers (village gypsies). The time of wandering in caravans, over mountains and settling in the valley for an overnight stay, has for the most part been abandoned. For the past 100 years or so, the better known Gipsy bands have originated in the cities where their talents were utilized in restaurants and hotels, playing music for the clientele. The music which they played was usually the popular music of the day or national music of the country, with violin as the primary instrument In Hungary, the cimbalom (a type of hammered dulcimer, played with a mallet) has been almost universally identified with Gipsy music. Although segregation has occurred, most often due to discrimination and often has a
negative connotation, it helped foster and maintain the Gipsy way of life. On many levels, the gypsies were viewed as ‘outsiders’ yet this fostered their identify, cohesion, and community spirit in a way nothing else could. In the past, music was the only way to maintain the freedom of the Gipsy spirit and express universal sorrow and melancholy in the midst of harsh circumstances. Today, the younger Gipsy musicians, although remaining true to their roots, are often college-educated. Kalman Balogh, the world-renown young Gipsy cimbalom player and some members of Kalyi Jag, Jozsef Balogh and his wife, Agnes Balogh-Kunstler, have
studied music formally. They remain true to the rural Gipsy music. The rural gypsies were known for creating primarily sorrowful and melancholic songs. They also used vocalization, such as, repetitive made-up sounds or created rhythms, by slapping ones hand on the thighs, or stomping on the floor. Emotional extremes are the core basis of the origin of these sounds and the music itself. Gypsies can express, like nobody else on earth (except perhaps for African-Americans, i.e., Blacks, who sing the blues) the pure love of life despite pain and sorrow. Kalyi Jag expresses the eternal yin and yang cycles of life, love and hate, happiness and sadness, hope and frustration as no other Gipsy group has done before. In addition, they compose and create songs and music reflective of their roots. The compositions are original and new ... but the traditional sound they create is as old as the Gipsy culture itself. “Gipsy Szerelem“ will live up to your highest expectations of what good music should sound like. It is a treasure-chest of music whose roots go very deep ... the expression of the eternal opposites of life provides a universal appeal for people who have eclectic tastes in music."
01 - Black Lover
02 - Bring Me My God
03 - My Guitar
04 - My Little Girl
05 - This Boy Is Cunning
06 - The Knife Grinder
07 - The Mother Is Cry
08 - Let's Go Dancing
09 - My Little Worn Wagon
10 - The Girl Whit Golden Teeth
11 - Up Mother
12 - With My Wife
13 - I Am Not Happy
14 - Wake Up Girl
15 - I Remember Bulgaria
16 - You Are My Lover
17 - Good World
18 - In The Fair
Gusztáv Varga - voice, guitar
Ágnes Künstler - voice
József Balogh - voice, tambura, guitar, spoon
József Nagy - water can, oral bass
"San Francisco may never again capture the epiphanic heights of the 1960s, when the Haight-Ashbury intersection was the very cradle of the global countercultural movement, but it seems it's not going to give up trying.
Rupa And The April Fishes is the latest category-defying, pan-everything, all-musical-points-of-the-compass outfit to come from the melting-pot city. They're surprising and delightful, as the punningly titled debut disc Extraordinary Rendition colourfully reveals.
Extraordinary Rendition crackles with energy and seethes with vivid splashes of colour. Sung in French, Spanish and English, it has a likable ability to simultaneously stimulate and soothe, its aromatic melange of sounds throwing up surprise after surprise in a free-wheeling, all-inclusive fashion that intoxicates with every note.
The musical signature owes much to the diversity of the five-piece band, fronted by the eponymous and exotic Rupa Marya, along with the intensely woven but lightly worn reciprocity of their playing. As gently swaying piano accordion mingles with the pulse of a double bass, brass and percussion massage the senses with welcome hints of klezmer, Argentinean tango, French Musette and Roma music. All of this is subtly filtered into a seductively assembled whole.
There's a useful tension, too, between Marya's ambition to say something politically relevant and her aspiration to do so in an determinedly laid-back style. You might catch echoes of DeVotchKa, The Tiger Lillies or Gogol Bordello here but you won't find any of their unfettered hysteria, comic-book grotesquerie or messy rawness. If you absolutely insist on a comparison, think Pink Martini with the emphasis on music rather than on style for style's sake.
Instead, there's something sunlit, warm and free to be found in all of this, and a refreshing honesty, too. It's musical globe-trotting conducted with sophisticated elegance and underpinned by a winning sense of joy."
"If Rupa were a movie she would be Amélie meets Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown meets Latcho Drom meets Do the Right Thing. She'd be set in India and Berkeley...She would be (and, in fact, is) an instant cult classic"
01. (San Francisco)
04. C'est Pas D'lamour
05. Américaine A Paris
07. Mal De Mer
09. Plus Que Moi
10. Not So Easy
13. Wishful Thinking
Marcus "The Tone" Cohen: trumpet
Isabel "Iz" Douglass: accordion, voice
Aaron "Rhone-Ditty-Rhone" Kierbel: percussion, contraptions, fish
Safa "Jazz Spy" Shokrai: upright bass
Ara Anderson: trumpet, bass trumpet
Rupa: songstress, voice, guitar
"Composer-musician M. Montanaro, with Vents d'Est, rewrites the geographical map of Europe with jazz and folk music, Czech, Slovak, Serb, Hungarian or French violins and harmonies are laced sometimes with swing sometimes with sacred music."
01. Deux villages
02. In tambourin virtuositas - Galobet lucet omnibus
04. Giro ergo sum - Passa carriera - Solo
08. La peur
10. Estampie - Pastorela
11. Horo na gore
Miqueu Montanaro - galube, tamburine, flutes
Szarka Tamás - violin
Buják Andor - clarinet, viola
Buják Krisztián - clarinet
Szarka Gyula - double bass
Pukkai Attila - cimbalom
Borbély Mihály - clarinet, saxophone
Horváth Zoltán - tambura
Béhr László - cimbalom
Eredics Gábor - accordion, tambura
Szendrodi Ferenc - tambura
Eredics Kálmán - double bass
Hayet Ayad (1,10.)
Carlo Rizzo (2.)
Nena Venetsanou (3,8,11.)
Sara Alexander (5,11.)
Samia Bechikh (7.)
Dominique Regef-violle o roue
Big thanks Frankie for the CD!
This record contains traditional songs, scored in an arrangement usual for Dikanda - not bound by any style, but based on ideas selected from many different styles.
The group was founded in 1997 in Szczecin, Poland. Passion for the traditional music and hard work let them create their own style and original sound. Their acoustic songs have been inspired wholly by Oriental culture, Balkan folklore – Macedonian and Romanian. Typical Dikanda’s style is creation of new words and meanings in composed songs.
Dikanda in one of the African’s dialects stands for family. This is directly connected with the group’s spirit – they live and work as if it was a small, loving family.
So far they have released 3 Cds, played hundreds of concerts, played on many significant European festivals. They were given numerous prices, including:
I Price at the Festival „Nowa tradycja” in 1999
I Price at the Festival „Eurofolk” in 1999v III place at the Folk Phonogram of the Year for the record „Jakhana Jakhana” in 2002
I Price at the Folkherbstfestival, the “Eiserner Eversteiner” - the only European Folkprice in Germany, Plauen 2004
“CD of the year” from the German Folkmagazin “Folker!” in 2005
They have played in India, Greece, and Russia and at the Montreux Jazz Festival. They achieved their popularity and great sympathy folk audience in many western-European countries (particularly in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy).
01. Ajotoro (Dikanda)
02. Me minise i gapi mou (Macedonia trad.)
03. Kokodoi (Gypsy trad.)
04. Kaman song (Rajasthan trad.)
05. Szirato (Dikanda)
06. Piriwiejsa (Russian trad.)
07. Jokoriste czarno (Dikanda)
08. Staro nevestinsko (Balcan trad.,lyr. by Dikanda)
09. Sadila moma (Bulgarian trad.)
10. Szai dzela (Dikanda)
Anna Witczak - vocal, accordion
Katarzyna Dziubak - vocal, violin, viola
Daniel Kaczmarczyk - drums, percussions
Piotr Rejdak - guitars
Grzegorz Kolbrecki - double bass
Cezary Borkowski - piano, synthesizers
America, what a country! The assimilated young New Yorkers in this Gypsy-punk sextet sure think so, jury duty and ESL classes notwithstanding. Previous Golem discs rewired traditional klezmer (raucous Jewish wedding jazz), mainly with vocals in Yiddish. Their fifth disc’s originals, based loosely on Ukrainian immigrant songs collected by singer Annette Ezekiel-Kogan, are in English and just about every tongue spoken East of the Danube, with rock and reggae underpinning whirling dervishes and Old World lover’s laments. The universality comes from carefree comic irony: Ezekiel-Kogan brassily nails a mock citizenship exam (Q: “Can you name the 49th state in the Union?” A: “Al-aaaaa-ska!”) and cosinger Aaron Diskin rhymes kosher and fo’ sure in a song about how much he loves tuches. Pretty soon, the space between exile and arrival starts sounding like a hot spot."
"This 6 piece Gypsy Punk Gem is renowned for electrifying dance floors with their globetrotting goulash of Jewish, Slavic, and Gypsy songs. Mixing old world and new without compromising either, the album is a startling portrait of an ideal world where there is no need only to ghettoize or assimilate. Citizen Boris winds through the struggles and triumphs of immigrant life in America, with the wild energy and panache that characterizes Golem's Gypsy-punk sound."
01. Train Across Ukraine
02. Mirror Mirror
03. Tucheses and Nenes
04. Come to Me
05. Meat Street
07. Tell Her You Love Her
08. Citizen Boris
10. Chervona Ruta
11. Balkan Espanol
Annette Ezekiel Kogan, Aaron Diskin (vocals)
Alicia Jo Rabins (violin)
Curtis Hasselbring (trombone)
Taylor Bergren-Chrisman (bass instrument)
Tom Monaghan (drums)
Emery Dobyns (percussion)
"An introduction to the musical and mystical journey of this neo folk act. Lux Interna: the innermost light an esoteric term that carries intonations of Gnosticism describes the nature of Lux Interna's music very aptly. Singer/songwriter Joshua Levi Ian Gentzke founded the group some ten years ago as an outlet for folk-inspired songs with demanding lyrics revolving around mystical topics of an existential nature. The voice of this music bespeaks a Blakean quest for the divine within this world. He is aided and abetted in this quest by his co-conspirators, Kathryn Gentzke, Katherine Trimble, Kevin Sweet, and Shane Hallinan, all adding vocal, visual and musical textures to the songs. Lux Interna have frequently been compared to artists such as Current 93, Backworld, Leonard Cohen and Nick Cave. This rings true, however, not in terms of imitation, but rather in the sense of a shared spiritual and aesthetic kinship. Musically one can expect a deep, passionate male voice and a soothing, sometimes ghost-like female vocal, woven into well-crafted songs arranged for acoustic guitars, cello, keyboards, and dulcimers. Over the course of four studio releases and a row of concerts (mainly in Europe), Lux Interna has emerged as one of the most original and essential ensembles of the Dark Folk genre, although the sheer quality of their music surpasses any clichéd niches.[a lantern carried in blood and skin] is an anthology featuring tracks from all previous Lux Interna albums. It is their first domestic release and gives an excellent overview over their musical and mystical journey thus far."Lux Interna trust their own muse without glancing sideways on genre conventions or commercial appeal; they create folksongs that are as catchy as they are complex and that confront the listeners with painful questions concerning the disenchantment of the world and their own fickle place in this world." A. Diesel, Zwielicht magazine (GermanyIn Digipak, with 12 page booklet."The neo-classical ballad works well on masterpieces like Fallen, Your Lily White Hands, and Into Nothing (Blackwatersong.) The whispering, female vocals on a few songs (like Your Lily White hands ) add a sensual background touch which is very complementary with the male vocals. Lux Interna has enough ingredients and potential to get out of the shadows, because this album is simply brilliant!"
02. Into Nothing (Blackwatersong)
04. For An Autumn Girl
05. Flowers Under Glass
06. Your Lily White Hands
07. A Season Apart
09. Lange Mußt Du Leiden