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5.0 out of 5 stars Mediterranean women, 8 Mar. 2015
This review is from: MUJERES DE AGUA (Audio CD)
On International Women's day let me tell you just how wonderful this album of female singers from around the Mediterranean is. It's taken a male producer and musician to bring them all together. But Javier Limon has always backed great women - the amazing Buika, Mariza and Jasmin Levy.

This album has 12 tracks all with a different female lead singer - Kurdish, Spanish, Greek, Ladino and Portugese. Javier has got the best from all the performers here and they all add their own distinct personality. The band and music is basically Spanish - flamenco with Mediterranean flavours.

The opening track is a great one by Kurdish singer Aynur, with clarinet by Husnu Senlendirci. Javier has now produced a solo album with Aynur, Hevra (Together).

Mariza gives a great fado track, Fadista Louco (Javier produced her album Terra).

Greek singer Eleftheria Arvanitaki has Javier on buzuki for her distinctly Greek sounding track Mil Mou Kai Mandarini. Eleftheria also has a solo Javier produced album Mirame.

There's a Sephardic Ladino track by Jasmin Levy with her tremulous voice (yes, Jasmin also has a Javier produced solo album, Sentir).

The remaining tracks are by Spanish singers. Buika puts in an amazing vocal on Oro Santa. Buika of course has a couple of albums produced by Javier.

Carmen Linares is backed by Dhafer Youssef on oud. There are great flamenco tracks by Estrella Morente, La Susi, Montse Cortes, Genera Cortes, Sandra Carrasco (again Javier has produced a solo album Sandra Carrasco) and La Shica.

An amazing range of unique singers.

Hevra (Together)
Hevra (Together)
Offered by Music-Shop
Price: £12.45

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kurdish vocal with a flamenco hint, 8 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Hevra (Together) (Audio CD)
Kurdish singer Aynur gets the Javier Limon flamenco treatment. Limon is a lover of the female singing voice and has produced albums by the likes of Mariza, Yasmin Levy and Buika. In fact Aynur appeared on Limon's wonderful album with a range of female singers from around the Mediterranean MUJERES DE AGUA.
Aynur's voice is clear and powerful, and the music has a Arabic and flamenco feel. There's lots of guitar, occasional bouzouki, hand claps, percussion, bit of clarinet and flute.
There's a powerful live track, Xeriw, with just piano and vocal.
Aynur's voice is quite remarkable. It ranges from gentle subtle tones to really belting it out without feeling strained. She has the vocal range of great flamenco or Arabic singers and her voice can soar and twist across the rootsy music. If you want a wilder, more Kurdish sound try the more percussive previous releases Kece Kurdan or Nupel.

Offered by Smaller World Future
Price: £110.03

5.0 out of 5 stars Amazon listing is wrong for DVD version (lists it as CD), 8 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: LOI (Audio CD)
Check whether you are getting a DVD or CD.

At the time of writing you can tell by looking at the image on the listing.

L'Homme De Beretta (Best Of)
L'Homme De Beretta (Best Of)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Early Koffi, 22 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Gorgeous rich honeyed Congolese vocals backed by restrained and classy backing. There's nothing brash and showy here. Instead you get a confident vocal line with many backing singers, weaving electric guitar, bubbling bass and the skip of drum kit.

I'm not sure when these tracks are from - the rough and ready sound quality makes them seem like quite early tracks. It's not the smooth sound of later years.

1. Dieu Voit Tout
2. Cherie Lipasa
3. Djoli
4. Bebe Ya Nsuka
5. Geo
6. Revenant
7. Samba Samba

Price: £14.70

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mauritanian metal!, 22 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Tzenni (Audio CD)
The traditional Moorish griot music of Mauritania is given a reworking with a kind of heavy metal vibe. It's quite unique! The electric guitar is ramped up weaving sinuous riffs with a drum kit tapping out the loping beat and a subtle pulsing bass. Over this is the twisting tremulous voice of Noura Mint Seymali. It's got that sit up and listen thing, where you suddenly go, "what is this music!?" Wild and both firmly rooted in traditional culture but also excitingly new without destroying the magic. Reminds me of what Yat Kha did for Tuvan throat singing with their album Yenesei Punk.

It's similar in feel to the tracks by her step mother Dimi Mint Abba, where an electric guitar was used - MOORISH MUSIC FROM MAURITANIA. But Noura takes it a step further. There's also the plucking of an tidinite (like the Malian n'goni) and an ardine (like the kora) but these are low in the mix.

The electric guitar is up front and picking out twisting patterns, the drum kit hitting out a relentless skipping beat and Noura's amazing, captivating voice is high in the mix a top it all. Backing vocals answer Noura's florid vocals on some tracks.

This is extraordinary music. Plug in and lose yourself.

Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £11.48

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Night listening is at your own risk!, 15 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gandadiko (Audio CD)
A beautiful semi acoustic offering of Malian 'blues'. Like the recordings of namesake Ali Farka Toure this is a wonderfully accessible music, recognisable and different in equal measure. It has a blues-like sound whilst being very definitely Malian.

Samba sings and plays acoustic or electric guitar. He is backed by ngoni (with it's banjo-like sound), njarka (a fiddle or violin, electric on one track), njurkel (a one stringed n'goni), bass, various percussions (calabash, doun-doun, shaker, tama) and sometimes backing vocals.

The range of instruments makes quite a rich sound and the lyrics are translated into English so you get an understanding of what the songs are about. The exception being Gafoure, "an incantation to the djinn Awa Gafoure, to flatter her and finally invite her in a trance dance which will calm her danger. For your own security, the text will remain not translated. The night listening is at your own risk."

Listen responsibly!

Price: £20.17

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars before the ballads, 15 Feb. 2015
This review is from: Casamance (Audio CD)
Early Super Diamono recording with Omar Pene and Ismael Lo on vocals. There are some different versions of tracks such as Djola Kele, Jalia and Adou Calphe which you may have heard on Lo's later solo releases.

The recording quality is basic but the music is glorious. A long way from the smooth harmonica ballads which Lo has made his sound and become relatively famous.

The music is played on guitar, keyboard, bit of brass and the staccato mbalax rhythms of the sabar drums. Not far from the sound of Etoile de Dakar, Youssou N'dour's early band. Well worth a listen.

Call of Bangalore
Call of Bangalore
Price: £11.81

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Glorious, 1 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Call of Bangalore (Audio CD)
An amazingly full and complex sound from just three instruments.

The lead is taken by the violin played in the southern Indian carnatic style. It often sounds like a voice as it weaves and spirals it's way. This is balanced perfectly by two percussionists with rapid bursts of drumming - it's not a tabla (as in northern Indian music) but sounds very similar and is played in that fast bubbling way.

Quite similar in energy and sound to U Srinivas, with violin instead the electric mandolin.

All the pieces played here are very accessible and easy to listen to, without being anything like 'easy listening' music if you see what I mean. The playing is energetic and captivating. Definitely a good way in to Indian music which can otherwise seem hard work and quite serious.

Five shorter pieces and one long 40 minute track. The longer piece isn't really slow, as even the prolonged intro by the violin has quick flourishing playing. Glorious.

Music From Korea
Music From Korea
Offered by Music-Shop
Price: £10.31

5.0 out of 5 stars Music from another planet!, 21 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Music From Korea (Audio CD)
Astonishingly different to anything else I've ever heard!

This is hilarious to my western ears. Almost every instrument sounds odd - out of tune and rasping, clashing or clanging!

The pace of the music is slow and stately with twanging, vibrating zithers, flutes and drums. Tracks can be long and often gradually build in pace and intensity towards the end.

Once your ears get used to the sounds it's quite magical. If you listen to modern classical pieces you might like this, for example Kronos Quartets more out there works.

Oj Tak!
Oj Tak!
Price: £11.51

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quirky Polish folk, jazz 'n' bass, 21 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Oj Tak! (Audio CD)
Clear and up front female vocal, sometimes sort of spoken in a rapid fire delivery, but mostly sung. The backing is led by double bass and drum kit, with occasional appearances by piano, wurlitzer keyboard, clarinet and breathy flute.

It's part folk, part jazz, part acoustic drum n bass!

Very accessible and the quirky vocal style stays on the right side of interesting rather than annoying. Try it!

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