Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: World Music, Pop
While Huun-Huur-Tu are folkloric pioneers, bringing the traditional music of Tuva to a worldwide audience, the goal of throat-singing rock band Yat-Kha is decidedly more aggressive and revolutionary. Albert Kuvezin, the ba... more »
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While Huun-Huur-Tu are folkloric pioneers, bringing the traditional music of Tuva to a worldwide audience, the goal of throat-singing rock band Yat-Kha is decidedly more aggressive and revolutionary. Albert Kuvezin, the band's founder and leader, and a former member of Huun-Huur-Tu, sees the folk music of Tuva as a stepping-off point for his band, a point of contact with the heritage but also a point of contention with the power of static culture. Yat-Kha feature electric guitar (often fuzzy and distorted, to mimic the gruff, basso kargiraa vocals), in addition to local string and percussion instruments that offer a rooted sound to an often chaotic musical web. A few of the songs on Dalai Beldiri come off as just repolished folk-pop, imitation blues that rely too heavily on standard times and melodic structures. But most of the album shines, using the shamanic roots of the group's Siberian predecessors to forge ahead with new, innovative, and often disconcerting music that emphasizes the power of the human voice as much as the power of the electric guitar. This is a groundbreaking album for Tuva, one that pushes the boundaries without just making it accessible. In fact, this music is anything but easy. It's challenging and unusual. --Louis Gibson
A mediocre effort from a talented individual
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Albert Kuvezin has followed a strange trajectory. From the electronic "Tundra Ghosts", to a more organic "Yenisej Punk" to, now, "Dalai Beldiri". Someone must have told him that Tuvan music is big with the Western yuppies and, as a result, his most "accessible" and weakest (and most heavily marketed) undertaking to date.While this record boasts a second throat songer, who is a true Golden Boy, the music tends to come across as a Tuvan garage band. In a nutshell, this is a nice alternative to the more mainstream Tuvan folk releases. Yat-Kha however has done much better. If you can get your hands on "Yenisej Punk" or "Tundra's Ghosts" you'd be much happier, IMHO."
HOOFBEATS, HEARTBEATS, SOUL...
Larry L. Looney | Austin, Texas USA | 05/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"...the music of Yat-Kha is an experience unlike anything you're likely to have heard. In the 70s and 80s, I began to see references to `hoomi' (spelled more correctly, I believe, as `khöömei') singing - an incredible, exotic vocal style that originated in Tuva, a republic that lies roughly between Siberia and Mongolia, which is now a member of the Russian Federation. Khöömei singing is, as far as I know, unique - the method allows the singer to produce multiple tones simultaneously. That's a simplistic description - it has to be heard to be believed. Yat-Kha is a more modern-influenced spin-off of the more traditional group Huun-Huur Tu. The music of Yat-Kha is still rooted firmly in Tuvan tradition, with the added sounds of electric guitar and bass - the production is a little more contemporary as well, to complement the band's sound.The songs speak of things which fill, fuel and enrich the lives of the Tuvan people - horses, nature, family, shamans, history, spirituality, and of course songs of love. The lyrics are not translated in their entirety in the accompanying booklet, but the brief summations offer up some absolutely beautiful imagery, giving Western listeners a pretty good idea of the songs' content. As for the emotion expressed by the singer - it needs no translation.The instruments used include the yat-kha (from which, obviously, the group takes its name), a type of long zither indigenous to the region; the morin-hüür, a bowed two-stringed instrument (roughly as tall as a cello); the khomuz, a type of Jew's harp; and sundry percussives, including single-sided drums, gongs, bells &c. The stringed instruments, which might seem limited in scope by my poor brief descriptions, actually produce quite a full sound - providing both melodic and rhythmic elements that the percussion underscores and drives very nicely. The electric guitar is used tastefully, more as a droning rhythm instrument than a wailing lead (to which we are accustomed in Western rock music) - it's not disruptive at all in relation to the ethnic spirit of the music, fitting in rather naturally.I can't stress enough how important the vocals are to the overall sound of this disc, and the group. They are the very soul of the music - even more so than in Western music, where, while they are still of paramount importance much of the time, they tend to be taken for granted. There is no danger of that happening in the case of Yat-Kha - the listener's attention will be riveted on them. I found myself hitting the `repeat' button a lot when I first played this CD - I simply couldn't believe what I was hearing. The vocals in Tuvan music are among the most strikingly memorable you're ever likely to hear.While the music on this CD might sound alien at first, it bears repeated listening. This is music of rare beauty, power and feeling - and that's something that can be universally appreciated. It'll open your ears as well as your mind to the vast universe of music that exists on this little ball we're riding together - and what better way to engender understanding among our fellow riders than through the rich cultures they have created?"
Interesting fusion disc.
Moses Alexander | Alabama, USA | 03/04/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Yat-Kha is needless to say, unlike anything you've ever heard. A bizarre combo of blues, 70s era classic rock riffs and the now world renowned Tuvan throat singing. This certainly won't go down as one of rock or world music's classic albums but there are definately some catchy tunes on it. The first two tracks especially are quite good, and would probably make good soundtrack music. There is one track of traditional Tuvan style singing & it seems odd amidst all the experimental fusion stuff, but in actuality makes a nice diversion from the rest of the disc. Of particular interest is the last track, which deals with a bunch of self-exiled Russian Orthodox believers in Tuva trying to escape the opression of the Soviet regime. Its bizarre to hear a sympathetic view of the way these folks were treated sung in Tuvan. This is for the TRULY adventurous."