The price is quite low, and the quality is pretty high, so consider giving this a deep listen and purchasing it.
Ored Recordings have done such stunning work recording and producing music from out-of-the-way places that they should be given an endowment to continue their work. This particular gem comes from Nalchik, Kabardino-Balkar Republic, which rests in the heartland of the Russian Caucasus. To familiarize yourself with your intrepid artists, consider reading the write-up you’ll find on their Bandcamp site:
Iynar (Eeinar) as is
The artistic work of the Iynar Ensemble has been a great example of what falls into the professional Soviet folklore category. The medium-size male choir appeared at the beginning of 90s in a Balkarian village Tashli Tala. The ensemble singers are the amateur artists who love singing and have enough talent for it.
The main part of Iynar’s repertoire consists of songs sung by Omar Otarov. Following the same logic, Tahir Guziev, the bandleader, used ‘the brightest example of the national folk music’ as a guidance. The repertoire includes the classic genres: ritual songs, Nart saga, ancient epos, lyric songs created by both past and contemporary composers. The ensemble plays at celebrations, takes part in various music and folk festivals, and occasionally wins awards.
However, Iynar seems to be related not to traditional folk genres but to the Caucasian pop scene. Their music video filmed in accordance with the standards of local pop music industry can be a bright example of that. It is evident due to the fact that this video received airtime on TV channel ‘9th wave’ which is specialized in the Caucasian pop music.
On the one hand, the whole situation seems strange, on the other hand it is quite common for the region. The thing is that many local amateur artists turn to epic heritage of the past while also having close ties to the local pop scene. This, in turn, leads them to adopting the aesthetics held by local film producers who draw inspiration from pop music of the 1980s.
What is also indicative is the way we were connected with them. We were introduced to Tahir Guziev by Muzafar Etcheev, the radio host, producer, and one of the leading figures of Karachay Balkarian Pop Scene. In other words, we came to the village Tashli Tala by getting directions not from folklorists but from a showbiz person.
We may call the ensemble Iynar as something not folklorish and get it out of our project’s agenda. This is what we would have done a year ago. Indeed, despite the fact that the Balkarian ensemble’s repertoire is, in its most parts, folk in nature, it is obvious that the way it is performed is not folk at at all.
What if we shift our focus from only authentic music and start looking at a tradition as an evolving phenomenon affected by various factors? What if we presume that the Soviet system and the Omar Otarov’s artistic legacy created a new tradition in the Karachay – Balkarian folklore? In such a case, Iynar becomes an important figure for Ored Recordings. We perceive it as today’s expressions of traditional music in one of its forms. The Soviet folk music is a new genre for Ored Recordings. Our scope of interest may have expanded, but traditional folk music remains at its core.
What is important is that theе recording session was not ordinary both for us and the music ensemble. At the very beginning, we explained that contrary to other music professionals we always aim at documenting the situation as it is. The ensemble members found the recording session rather new and unfamiliar. So far they had been dealing only with sound producers, who were quite intrusive during recording and post-production. So, the recording session in Tashli Tala was a kind of challenge to Iynar (unfortunately, the session turned out to be a bit formal)
Did the ensemble manage the situation? Did we manage to document a piece of semi-folk culture? This music release may offer answers.
Sound: Timur Kodzoko
Sound editing: Timur Kodzoko
Photography: Elena Miloserdova
Cover art: Milana Khalilova
Notes: Bulat Khalilov, Yaroslav Suzdaltsev, Olesya Altynbaeva
Special thanks to Muzafar Etcheyev and Betal Bekanov
Recorded in Tashli-Tala village, Kabardino-Balkaria,
Russia. In June 2016.
Sublime isn’t quite a strong enough word to describe the stylings of pianist Nhung Nguyen. She comes to me from her experimental music background something I thank my friend and colleague C-Drik for), but this particular release, my favorite of her substantial back catalog, is something that would have done Andrei Tarkovsky (the famed director of the magnificent movie, Nostalghia) proud. It is a perfect album to simply relax to and let the mind wander a bit.
Mathias Eick-Ravensburg. Label: ECM Records. Thirty-nine year old Norwegian composer and multi-instrumentalist Mathias Eick is prodigious talent who has released four critically acclaimed solo albums, including Ravensburg which was recently released by ECM Record. It’s the latest chapter in the Mathias Eick story, Mathias Eick was born in the village of Furnes, in Norway, on […]
Umor Rex is one of Mexico’s most important record labels, and I’m frankly surprised they’re not getting more press worldwide. Like so many cool modern imprints, they’re not sticking to one genre only. You will find electronic music, drone, indie-folk and experimental music well-represented in Dezember. Take some time to sample their wares!
1. Le Skeletonne – The riot was always alone 03:32
2. Miró Belle – A 03:17
3. Rats On No Evil Star – Tree in the green 04:18
4. S ND Y P RL RS – Dracula 02:47
5. Ibi Ego – U and Me vs. the sea master 04:20
6. The Human Elephant – Insomnia 04:01
7. Ghost Birds – Drama (how I hate) 02:46
8. Cars And Trains – I Know Someone Who Cant Recognize 04:38
9. Hardman Bros – Change The Mode 01:11
10. Tidy Kid – Those Red Paintings 02:30
11. Ponk – Sleeves II 03:38
12. Anthna – Loving Raw Bands 06:28
13. Tidy Kid – Bus Stop 01:40
14. Nicholas Szczepanik – The Short / Lived 04:39
I have a sneaking suspicion that the legendary Divan poet Fuzûlî didn’t dabble in modern hip-hop during the 1500s, though who am I to suggest that the young, enterprising souls in bastrd didn’t go back in time and ask him to sample a few grooves for him?
Rather elegant jazzy lo-fi beat music out of Northern California. A worthy purchase.
Michael Manring – bass
Steve Smith – drums
Chris Muir – electric guitar
Tom Coster – keyboards
Karl Perazzo – percussion
Greg Osby – alto saxophone
John Tchicai – tenor and alto saxophones
Mike Keneally – electric guitar
with special guests:
Zakir Hussain – tabla & percussion (“On The Corner Jam“)
ROVA Sax Quartet [Bruce Ackley, Steve Adams, Larry Ochs, Jon Raskin) (“Black Satin“)
Dave Creamer – electric guitar (“Black Satin“)
This album a free-jazz masterpiece from 2005, is now available courtesy of Cuneiform Records, and is discounted this weekend to $7. Jump on it!