Anouar Brahem: The Astounding Eyes of Rita (ECM/Ode)

 |   |  <1 min read

Anouar Brahem: The Lover of Beirut
Anouar Brahem: The Astounding Eyes of Rita (ECM/Ode)

The previous album posted at Elsewhere by this oud player, Le Voyage de Sahar, was one of the best in his long career and -- as with Le pas du chat noir of 2002 -- confirmed that he was craeting his own genre, a kind of Middle Eastern chamber jazz for oud, piano and accordion.

There was a cool stillness about Le Voyage de Sahar and that mood carries over into this album with a very different line-up.

Here Brahem's oud reaches for the lower and quieter end of the spectrum alongside the woody bass clarinet of Klaus Gesing who brings an exotic stateliness to the slow movements of these pieces. Although there is percussion and bass, there is a feeling of weightlessness here as the oud and clarinet gently lift off and make delicate explorations which frequently sound almost tentative.

This is music which sounds suspended in the spheres and unlike much other oud music at Elsewhere which can be vibrant and vigorous, this conjures up those moments between sleep and waking when the mind drifts.

Not quite the hands down winner that the previous albums mentioned have been, but Brahem once again offers music which is beguiling and singular. 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Jazz at Elsewhere articles index

JACQUES LOUSSIER AT 75: Bach and all that jazz

JACQUES LOUSSIER AT 75: Bach and all that jazz

Jacques Loussier, who popularised jazz back when television was broadcast in black and white, says his career came about by accident. Half a century on from his first album and four... > Read more

Cooper-Moore and Stephen Gauci: Conversations, Vol 1 (577 Records/digital outlets)

Cooper-Moore and Stephen Gauci: Conversations, Vol 1 (577 Records/digital outlets)

No one would say free jazz is easy and perhaps the case can be made that it should by definition be difficult. It is here, because with this duo the listener just has to go... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

HOSSAM RAMZY INTERVIEWED (2004): Egypt's music ambassador

HOSSAM RAMZY INTERVIEWED (2004): Egypt's music ambassador

Hossam Ramzy, who has a home in England and an apartment in Cairo, is a hard man to pin down. The first call is to the British office where the Egyptian composer and percussionist is... > Read more

THE WORLD OF TINTIN. The timeless boy

THE WORLD OF TINTIN. The timeless boy

Age has not wearied him -- and nor can it. The little adventurer with a distinctive flick to his forelock, oddly unfashionable plus-fours and rarely a change of clothes, is frozen in time. As he... > Read more