Sunday, October 30, 2005

thrash folk

'The Return Of The Magic Horses' (Intoarcerea cailor magica) - Taraf de Haidouks

This still sounds as insane and brilliant to me now as it did when I sat in my at my kitchen table one fateful Saturday tea time and listened to it for the first time. Staring off into the middle distance, mouth slightly open as the woman I share the kitchen with became increasingly annoyed and worried.

“What is THIS?!?”, she casually demanded over the manic swirling jig.

“Gypsies... from Romania...” I eventually replied, wiping the drool from the cd cover, my accordian-induced reverie temporarily interupted, “I... think... I like it.”

Well I guess its never going to rock everyone's boat, but the music of ‘Taraf de Haidouks’ (still Romania’s premiere Gypsy ensemble as far as I know) pushes my boat across the the lake to a strange and wonderful land. A land of of cubist melodies and frantic sonic detail and space. At times the whole band are playing so fast they actually seem to levitate, while the slow songs make me feel pissed and bohemian.

'Absinth I Drink You, Absinth I Eat You' (Pelin bau, pelin maninc) - Taraf de Haidouks

In world music circles they are a well established act. They once played at the Viper Room in LA for Johnny Depp, (what a gig! Can you imagine?) Their story is long and interesting, but I’m not going into that here - do a search, there’ s lots of stuff about them.

This album was recorded live in Bucharest and is an absolute gem. Buy it!

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