"Remember the polyrhythmic big beat of Adam and the Ants? Here's the people they ripped off in a thirty-minute performance that blows the white sox off of Adam's boys. Strong, well-coordinated drumming punctuated with occasional yells is all you'll get and all you'll want from this ensemble. No background music, this commands your full attention as it guides you into a too-short trance. The Drummers of Burundi will change the way you hear music."
cibare | Dublin | 06/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have not heard the CD, but I am Burundian and I have experienced Drumming both as a player and as a spectator. The best way to appreciate them must be live and visual, or if you cannot see them in the rare concerts, buy the CD and play it at maximal volume on a good sound system. It is thunderous like a polyrithmic waterfall!!!! One important thing to remember is that Burundian drumming or INGOMA as it is known is sacred. It is played at important national events, In the pre-colonial past it was the symbol of royal authority"
The truth (no, really)
D. Whitney Quinn | lost angeles | 01/25/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"do yourself a favor...actually two favors. disregard the negative reviews completely - and buy this cd. i have had this in my collection for years and keep coming back to it.first, it is not monorhythmic or monotonous. there are about 40 variations in the polyrhythms - if you listen. the energy - holy moly...is like a slow, roiling tidal wave. this is where bo diddley/the meters/neville brothers got their sound - the original source - the deep africa motherlode of polyrhythmic trance music. the recording is fine - certainly much better than a typical field recording.play it LOUD. it is so mind-altering that if the government knew about it, they would have to declare it a controlled substance, available by prescription only."
Frankly, It's Not Too Exciting
Rich Latta | Albuquerque, NM - Land of Entitlement | 11/04/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"The liner notes claim that 41 different rhythms are employed throughout this 30 minute drumming workout. I would be extremely hard-pressed to identify them, so I may be way out of my league in writing this review. But I happen to dig African drumming and this CD is far from the most impressive drumming I've ever heard.
I don't want to downplay the cultural significance that drumming has with the people of Burundi, but I expect your average non-devotee would find the proceedings here to be too repetitive to be of much interest (as might be expected). They do play with passion, but this passion is most evident from the enthusiastic cheers that are consistently interspersed throughout the entire recording and these yelps quickly grow tiresome. A steady mid tempo is maintained for the entire duration and the general feeling actually comes off more laid-back than energetic. Possibly the most interesting thing about this recording is the occasional singing, especially during a brief break from the drumming about 7 minutes in.
Clearly much is lost in translation from the spectacle of a live performance of these musicians who without a doubt display some subtlety and skill. So I would say this recording isn't likely to appeal to anyone beyond those who have a vested interest in this music or possibly students studying the culture of Burundi and its connection to drumming if not actual drummers."
Kazhdenin | Los Angeles, CA USA | 02/15/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have to go with the Mighty Quinn here: this is powerful music, and if you're even looking at something like this do yourself a huge favor and buy it. If you like Gabriel's Passion, if you like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, you will love this album."