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Songs from the Victorious City

Anne Dudley, Dudley/Coleman Audio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • ASIN: B0000272O5
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 377,127 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
The story goes (and I apologise if I get some details wrong) that Jaz Coleman's (from Killing Joke) frequent trips to Cairo gave him a love for the rich music of Egypt and its chaotic and exciting culture. However, many Egyptian recordings are of mediocre quality and the songs too long and cyclic for Western ears. By chance he was introduced to Anne Dudley (then with Art of Noise & a well known producer) at a party, they got talking and a project to blend the best of East & West was born.
Setting off to Cairo armed with a DAT recorder, Jaz spend weeks recording the sounds of the street and market place, recruiting local musicians and unearthing a dusty 24 track studio in a Cairo basement. He then went into the refurbished studio with the local musicians he had found who recorded many of the tracks in one take and with no rehearsal. The tapes were then brought back to England, mixed with the DAT recordings (to add atmosphere) in a top studio, produced & arranged by Anne Dudley and released to almost total lack of interest in the UK. It was a different story in Egypt however, where Songs from the Victorious City shot to the top of the Egyptian charts & stayed there for months.
You really need to hear it to appreciate it, but Songs... really is a work of total & utter brilliance & quite unique in bringing the sound quality and production skills of the West to bear whilst enhancing (rather than suppressing) the natural joy & skill of the Egyptian musicians. It really does make you want to rush out & board a plane for Cairo & I cannot recommend it highly enough to anyone who appreciates skilfully made, excellently recorded and timeless music.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Something Different 11 Oct 2006
Format:Audio CD
Ex Killing Joke lead singer Coleman joins with Art of Noise founder and Film/TV composer Anne Dudley to record an album about Cairo? Absolutely. Songs from the Victorious City is an unusual recording: Traditional North African/Arabic instruments are recorded in a modern/"Pop" context. Mostly instrumental, the tracks creep up on the listener. They are often up-tempo but without losing their atmospheric and mysterious quality. The arabic string arrangements dominate, but over a strong rhythmic base. Dudley's film and TV experience is evident in the cinematic arrangements -Close your eyes and you are being chased through the Souks, the smells of tobacco and spices surrounding you. The opening and closing tracks are strong, as are "The Conqueror" and "Habebe". Essentially an album of European/Arabic hybrid music, this would be a good place to start dabbling in Arabic and North African music. Loses a star due to the frantic pace of some of the tracks.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Greatest Albums Ever 11 Nov 2010
Format:Audio CD
One of the Greatest Albums Ever. One of the Greatest Albums Ever. It just is. It's a shame it's so hard to get; still, still out-of-print in the U.S.

Still, still not on Pandora. Why is that?!

The 3 CD singles from this album are great, esp. the promo one.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Something Different 8 Jan 2010
Format:Audio CD
Ex Killing Joke lead singer Coleman joins with Art of Noise founder and Film/TV composer Anne Dudley to record an album about Cairo? Absolutely. Songs from the Victorious City is an unusual recording: Traditional North African/Arabic instruments are recorded in a modern/"Pop" context. Mostly instrumental, the tracks creep up on the listener. They are often up-tempo but without losing their atmospheric and mysterious quality. The arabic string arrangements dominate, but over a strong rhythmic base. Dudley's film and TV experience is evident in the cinematic arrangements -Close your eyes and you are being chased through the Souks, the smells of tobacco and spices surrounding you. The opening and closing tracks are strong, as are "The Conqueror" and "Habebe". Essentially an album of European/Arabic hybrid music, this would be a good place to start dabbling in Arabic and North African music. Loses a star due to the frantic pace of some of the tracks.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Belly dance 25 Nov 2011
Format:Audio CD
First of all, I'm a belly dancer and I think this music is absolutely fantastic! The music is of course oriental, but very different from the typical Egyptian music. I wouldn't use this music when dancing at a restaurant or at a private party, but it would definitely work for a dramatic (or different) stage performance. The music is really beautiful.
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