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46 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars background becomes foreground,
Hearing Anouar Brahem play solo on the track 'Bahia' on Jan Garbarek's Madar album, I first felt the urge to turn down the lights, turn up the volume, immerse in the sound; the oud playing is mesmeric.
That feel is here in Le Pas Du Chat Noir, where the oud initially takes a backstage to simple piano and accordian, making for some really intense music. As the oud joins later, the three instruments intertwine, supporting each other, fading away when not needed, keeping the flow and the power of the music strong to the end.
Instrumental albums are often relegated to the role of musac, background filler. Not this album, or indeed any Anouar Brahem music I've heard to date. Intense and simple. It makes you want to bring it to the foreground, to stop and just listen, sink into the sound (preferably in the dark ;-)
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars music for the soul...,
When I first heard this album it sat me down in my seat..It stops you in your tracks and touches the quiet part of the heart. It's both intricate and delicate and flows full of atmospherics...it's sophisticated and yet so accessible.The compositions create a mood all of their own. Lay back, turn down the lights and chill..it's magic.
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars riviting stuff,
Out of the 120 or so cd's i've bought in the past 12 months, this one has to be rated in the top 5. Brahem's oud is accompanied by some very fine piano and accordion playing. The three intertwine continuously. Themes repeat in cycles, flowing back at different times, keeping your attention fixed throughout. You'll find you can easily do the 70 minutes duration in one sitting.
Production is very good (not quite top marks, for there is slight 'tizzing' on two tracks, sounds as if a microphone in the studio vibrates - a friend almost sent his speakers back to B&W thinking there was something wrong with them!). I went out and bought Astrakan Café and Thimar but these I didn't like as much.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quieter but still lovely,
Besides his collaborations with musicians from the Middle East/Turkey (Astrakan Café, The Astounding Eyes of Rita, Conte de l`incroyable amour and Barzakh), Brahem teamed up with western musicians. Le pas du chat noir and Le Voyage de Sahar have him playing with pianist Francois Couturier and accordionist Jean-Louis Matinier (for goodness sake, where else but ECM would you find an oud player, pianist and accordionist playing together - and making it work? What a label). These two albums are quieter than Brahem's other works and are not as immediately accessible (or exotic), but superb nonetheless.
Anouar Brahem is one of the best-selling artists on ECM, a record label that over the decades has pushed the boundaries of jazz and world-fusion - and provided great music in the process. To me, Brahem is the epitome of all the label represents. His nine or so albums with ECM, beginning with Barzakh in 1990, offer sublime music found nowhere else. The exotic images he draws with his intricate oud playing is always beautifully recorded and his musical collaborations are always fascinating. Lovely stuff.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally adictive,
This album together with a companion `The voyage de Sahar' are a wonderful set. This is music for both setting a background mood and it also rewards intensive focussed listening. Rhythmic and relaxing, the music rolls along with superb playing and interplay between musicians. No one dominates, nothing showy or over assertive even when the melody moves between instruments in a hypnotic variation on a series of melodic themes. It avoids cliché' jazz and is highly particular with a wonderful balance of rich instruments. It is full of associations of Paris, Morocco and Eastern Europe.
I now have all of Anouar Brahems albums and recommend every one. Though these two seem to have dominated this year.
I agree with all the positive comments above.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Aurimas,
This album is splendid! If you are predisposed to thoughtful quiet evening - it's right for you. Its simplicity goes in contrary with triviality and sentimentality, it leads you into something bright, clear and true.
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent music for Anoura Brahem,
amazing music .. takes into different world all together .. if you're unfamiliar with Oud and would like to know about it .. this is your best bet .. suitable for most tastes ..
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful!,
My third purchase of this artist. Not disappointed. This is my 3rd cd of Anouar. He is music adds a new dimension to my jazz music palette. Love this ECM artist.
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