04 January 2010

Monday's mp3: Tunesian Eyes

CD REVIEW
Anouar Brahem: The Astounding Eyes of Rita (ECM)

Something there is about Palestinan poet Mahmoud Darwish that inspires musicians. And not just to set his words to music, as was done by Reem Kelani with the song "Mawwaal" on her album Sprinting Gazelle. Just as interesting is that he inspires instrumentalists to somehow emulate the rhythm or melody or mood of his poems through strictly instrumental music. That's what Marcel Khalife did on his Taqasim, and the poet's words also inspired the latest album by Tunesian oud master Anouar Brahem.

Playing with bass clarinetist Klaus Gesing, bassist Bjorn Meyer, and percussionist Khaled Yassine, Brahem has created an astonishingly engaging album of..what to call it?... world-jazz fusion? Tunesian neo-folk? Don't label, just listen (try "Galilee Mon Amour" for starters), and the beauty of the music and the quality of the recording will point the way to sonic bliss.

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