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   Home  > CDs / Videos

Balkan Blues - Soufles De Lame

Review

Anyone who has witnessed the prowess of a Romanian wedding band with its fifteen or twenty piece brass section will be aware of the power of the musicians from this part of Europe. The dizzying speed and energy they impart through ridiculously complex yet joyful sounding pseudo classical pieces is simply jaw dropping. Here on this double CD is collection of some of the richest and eclectic sounds you will ever have the pleasure of hearing on CD.

The preference of Balkan musicians for death defying virtuosity and a sometimes overly theatrical presentation, makes this music at the very least compelling and at best down right astonishing. The array of instruments alone is enough to make the faint hearted start looking for a sampler and the nearest S Club 7 album, as this music challenges as well as entertains. Clarinets, violins, double bass, accordion, guitar, mandolin, bag pipes, lyra, gadulka, tsimbal dulcimer, (the latter three are variations on clarinets and harps), not to mention full on vocals and brass section.

Standout musicians include Ross Daly whose beautiful Arabian influenced melodies combine sumptuously with her band. Aleksandar Sisic plays some incredible violin on “Chelipe”, sounding like a gypsy Nigel Kennedy. Toni Iordache plays the dulcimer (a harp like instrument that lies flat, the strings struck with beaters) with such virtuosic aplomb you wonder why this music lacks the recognition it deserves, if nothing else this collection goes some way to redressing this imbalance.

There is a sensitive beauty here too especially on the sad ballad “Mana” by Loudovikos, string quartet, voice and mandolin blending seamlessly for a touching love song. Captured on tape with meticulous accuracy this CD documents the breadth and depth of the multicultural music that exists in this tumultuous and troubled land and also its warm and strongly beating heart through its strange but beautiful music.

Superb double CD set includes special double width digi pack case and cover mounted booklet.


1. La Livezile Lui Ion - Achim Nica 10. Chelipe - Aleksandra Sisic
2. Sambra Oilor Din Maramures - Dumitru Farcas 11. Aven Romalen, Aven Cavalen - Vladimir Kandic
3. Hora - Ion Petre Stoican 12. Edinaesetorca - Kocani Orkestar
4. Breaza De La Hulubesti - Vasile Pandelescu 13. Balkan Blues - Ferus Mustafov & Milan Safkov
5. Geamparalele Lui Haidim - Toni Iordache 14. Cherenije - Esma Redzepova
6. Mikro Kopelidaki Mou - Psarantonis & Ensemble 15. Asene, Sinko - Mladen Kojnarov
7. Afou 'Heis Allon Sti Kardia - Ross Daly & Labyrinth 16. Bavna Melodija I Racenica - Dimitar Petrova
8. Mana - Loudovikos 17. Stujan Otgore Varvese - Komna Stojanova
9. Tesko Oro - Ensemble Rakija 18. Thelleze Qe Shkel Mbi Vese - Ensemble Tirana
1. I Agapi Traudiete panta - Loudovikos 9. Usti - Olivera Katarina
2. Emai Orfanos Apo Paidhi - Niki Tramba 10. Oh Ljabav - Ensemble Rakija
3. Skaros - Petro-Loukas Chalikias & kompania 11. Preserka - Blehorkestar Bakija Bakic From Vranje
4. A Oilor - Luca Novac 12. Balkan Blues Part 1 - Ferus Mustafov & Milan Safkov
5. Inel, Inel De Aur - Dona Dumitru Siminica 13. Wallachian Suite - The Bulgarioan Allstar Orchestra
6. Balada haiduceasca - Toni Iordache 14. Radka E Flala V Gradina - Sestri Georgievi
7. Cantec De Masa - Vasile Vasilescu 15. Vito Pellumbesha - Ensemble Tirana
8. Hora De la Costanta - Ion Petre Stoican 16. Besena Rovena - Rromano Dives

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