Hossam Ramzy and Ossama El Hendy: Ruby (ARC Music)

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Hossam Ramzy and Ossama El Hendy: Ruby
Hossam Ramzy and Ossama El Hendy: Ruby (ARC Music)

Said it before but will say it again: you should never judge a bellydance album by its cover. 

You should look for a name like Hossam Ramzy and consider that a hallmark of quality. The man is genius and also astonishingly prolific as a writer and performer. This time out the percussionist pairs up with multi-instrumentalist El Hendy (keyboards, accordion, bass) to lead the small and swinging ensemble through material which evokes the sound of classic Egyptian bellydance of the Seventies and Eighties.

You needn't get out of your seat and sway your stomach to this, it works just fine as a listening album -- although be warned, it is exotically lively. Even the sultry and melancholy numbers.

Perhaps not quite as striking as the Cairo Nights album with Samy El Baby (a Best of Elsewhere 2007 album) but pretty terrific nonethless. 

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