24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 9 December 2005
I have had listened to this album ceaselessly since buying it, and on the strength of a few of the tracks I cannot rate it highly enough. I think that a new, raw voice like this comes along quite rarely - think of your response the first time you heard Nina Simone, Joni Mitchell or Camarón de la Isla - and Yasmin certainly is in possession of one such unique sound. The first track and La Alegria are astonishing, as is her rendering of Gracias a la Vida. I'm in the process of buying the rest of her back catalogue, and I'm hoping she'll maintain the standard of the best tracks here in the future, particularly the flamenco influenced songs. On Jools Holland she was wonderful, and I would like to catch her live in England next time she returns. Buy this and enjoy!
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 18 October 2006
This is an achingly beautiful album that will eventually haunt you long after you have stopped playing it.
If you are unfamiliar with Yasmin Levy or indeed the Ladino style of music you may need to give it a few plays. However, with each play the album gives more pleasure than you can possibly cope with !
It is a great peformance and I have no hesitation in saying buy it !
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2007
Admittedly this isn't the kind of music that would be appreciated if you put it on the jukebox down at your local pub, but . . . if you are sitting on the beach at sunset listening to it through your headphones you'll realise what life is actually about. And even if you're sitting in a jam on the M25 you won't be too bothered about getting home early. 'Me Voy' especially has to rate as a track that could be left for posterity as representing the highs and lows of what it was like to be human. One slight note of caution is that some of the high notes tend to 'separate' slightly. I've tried this on each of my hi-fi systems - Harmon Kardon PC speakers, a Bose CD player and a Denon hi-fi - and it happens on each of them, so I can only assume it was a problem with the recording. Whether it would be like this on a system that costs £0000s I don't know. It shouldn't stop you buying this CD as after all you should listen to the music not the system but it seems a shame if the recording equipment couldn't keep pace with Yasmin's amazing voice.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 24 August 2005
Give yourself to this singer and her rendering of a time when Europe was not separate from the Middle East, Jew from Muslim, etc. She has a beautiful, lyrical, totally passionate and compassionate vision -- and voice -- of love, desire and loss. The music is densely, but not in any cliched way Arabic-Spanish/Ladino. Her voice is perfect, all the more so for the ache and anguish in it. I can't stop buying it for people who'll care too. Totally hooked.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 18 January 2007
The musical style of this CD is modern, passionate, rather forceful flamenco. I suspect that there was no "flamenco" in Spain at the time of the expulsion of the Jews, and that this music was not historicaly sung in this fashion. If you like flamenco, it is well worth having, as a contrast to the Greek/Turkish style which has survived - or been recreated - by Savina Yiannatou & others.
The words are Sephardic Jewish, but - unless you know spanish & the details of the songs - I suspect most listeners would not realise this.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 27 February 2006
If only today's popular music had just an ounce of Jasmin Levy's passion and sincerity. How could you not believe every note she sings as being straight from her heart? Amazing music, amazing woman.
What a treat! Yasmin Levy reworks some traditional Sephardic and gypsy melodies and combines them with her own compositions and a very moving tribute to Chilean Violeta Parra on this superb recording. Her voice, which can be sweet but can also have a wonderful raw edginess, is quite superb - my partner, who usually only likes classical singers, also thought she was stunning! - and her accompanying band of musicians are truly excellent. Favourites on the disc included 'Nasci en Alamo' (the opening gypsy song), the devastatingly sad but gutsy 'Alegria', and the more gentle 'Noches, Noches'. A fascinating combination of Spanish flamenco and Sephardic song, from a highly individual artist.
on 21 February 2009
For 800 years Jews and Muslims lived together peacefully in Andalusia and their music merged. Then Gypsies arrived and added their rhytm and Flamenco was born. But at that time the Jews were expelled and their Ladino music lived on in various other countries.
Yasmin Levy took Ladino back to its roots and the result is a passionate marriage between Ladino and Flamenco. You will hear flamenco rhythms, arabic influences and even a prayer from the Sephardic tradition. Yasmin brings them all together naturally. When you've heard her once, you want to hear more.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 16 January 2006
This CD is the most beutiful,and pure,raw,passionate flammenco / arabic / judaic music,that I've ever heard,If you love truly authentic music,that comes straight from the heart,not only of a truely passionate female vocalist,but also straight from the 'soul' of the desert countries,you'll be blown away with this for SURE!,totally transfixing,beutifull,passionate,honest,powerfull and true,I 'honestly' value this disk,more than any other I own!.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 23 December 2005
I can not put into words the beauty which lies in this album. It is stunning, passionate, soulful. The album comes with a book which has the songs in Spanish and English translation for those who want to know the meaning of these wonderful songs. Sit back and allow yourself to get lost in the passion, heart and soul of these songs.