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Open Strings: Early Virtuoso Recordings From The Middle East
€ 19.00
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Open Strings: Early Virtuoso Recordings From The Middle East

€ 19.00

LABEL: Honest Jon's
GENRE: Folk | FORMAT: CDx2 | CATALOG N. HJRCD39 | YEAR. (2009)

Out of stock

'Superbly stylish in conception and packaging, it shows that small independent labels can still be an inspirational force' (Daily Telegraph); 'definitive and essential' (Brainwashed); 'stunning in its historical interest and musicianship' (Boston Phoenix); 'phenomenal and mesmerizing' (Dusted); 'one of the major phonographic salvage operations of our time' (The Wire). 'The archival finds are, without exception, phenomenal – and mesmerizing. The oud, the santour and spike fiddle dominate. There are other instruments, but without a little more familiarity with the region’s music traditions (of which three – Arabic,Turkish and Persian – are represented here), these are difficult to accurately identify. Honest Jon’s has intentionally foregone providing any notes, instead letting the listener engage directly with the pieces, all of them improvisational performances lasting about three minutes. 'The instrumental command on these performances simply dazzles. Blindingly fast runs through the high register get tempered with stretches of silence and a preternatural understanding of fluctuating tempos. Melodic inventiveness never fails to heighten the drama, making one want to follow each note of each piece, so as not to miss a detail. Nechat Bey, with five tracks here, is notable for his versatility, appearing on oud as well as spike fiddle. Adul Hussein Khan Shanazi, with three tracks, brings shape to even the fastest, densest passages. Starting with a simple passage of chording, his Mavaraounnahr builds into a complex weave of ecstatic chording and intricate rolls. 'At times, especially on the spike fiddle tunes from Sami Chawa as well as Mehmet and Ahmet Balki-Oglu, the nearly 90-year-old recordings predict all sorts of modern musical vocabulary, much of what we might consider experimental now. Chawa posits, in brief flashes, a particularly abrasive take on free improvisation, while the latter duo prefigure the current obsession with scraping, wavering drone.' Dusted

Notes   Tracklisting
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 Disc 1
1 Abdul Hussein Khan Shahnazi Homayoun
2 Moustapha Bey Rida Taxim Hugaz Kar Wahda
3 Bahkesirli Fuat Bey Nigris Taxim
4 Tanbouri Ibrahim Bey Adham Taxim Hidjaz
5 Sami Chawa Eerabi Fil Sahra
6 Abdul Hussein Khan Shahnazi Bidad
7 Haigo Shushtar
8 Abdul Hussein Khan Shahnazi Mofhalef Segah
9 Sami Chawa Taxim Nahawand Wahda
10 Nechat Bey Adjem Achiran Taxim
11 Nechat Bey Hidjaz Taxim
12 Nechat Bey Husseini Taxim
13 Nechat Bey Yeghia Taxim
14 Kanoni Artaki Soultanigiah
15 Kementchedi Alecco Kurduli Hidjazkiar Taxim
16 Nechat Bey Rast Taxim
17 Oudi Yorgho Seghiah Taxim
18 Abdul Hussein Khan Shahnazi Mavaraounnahr
19 Tambouredji Osman Pehlivan Anadol Kachik Havassi
20 Mehmet And Ahmet Balki-Oglu Aydin Oyun Havassi
 Disc 2
1 Sir Richard Bishop* Olive Oasis
2 Micah Blue Smaldone Mortissa
3 Michael Flower Lake Of Fire
4 Charlie Parr Paul Bunyan's Fall
5 Six Organs Of Admittance Goat, Thorns And Brick
6 Bruce Licher Mesopotamia
7 Paul Metzger Emel
8 Rick Tomlinson Surfin' UAE
9 Steffen Basho-Junghans Improvisation 6
10 MV And EE You Matter, Sometimes