Victor Ghannam and Jacco Muller: Palace of Dreams

 |   |  <1 min read

Jacco Muller and Victor Ghannam: Old Snake Boots
Victor Ghannam and Jacco Muller: Palace of Dreams

Regrettably like the proverbial curate's egg, this is good in parts.

But then again, too few to mention. 

Following their Viento del Desierto collaboration in 2009, Dutch flamenco guitarist Muller again teams up with oud player Ghannam. And on paper this looks an even more daring bridging of cultures and styles which brings in electric guitar, tabla drums, synth-strings and electric oud.

However the possibilities available sometimes err perilously close to exotic New Age (Velvet Moonlight, the title track). But mostly this delivers Middle Eastern and flamenco melodic drama (the dueling strings on Wandering Nomads), broody balladery (Mirador de Daraxa) and heel-clicking rhythms (Raq's Al Sultan).

The spaghetti western Old Snake Boots is full of stereotypical wind-blown melodrama and Telecaster twang'n'distortion which is okay but sits at odds with most things here, and the short pieces (WaHee, Turquoise Sky and Dusty Roads, all well shy of two minutes) sound little more than soundtrack filler.

So a mixed bag which at its best crosses the cultural and musical divides, but too often doesn't deliver on the promise or potential.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

ASIF ALI KHAN INTERVIEWED, SORT OF (2014): The gang's all here

ASIF ALI KHAN INTERVIEWED, SORT OF (2014): The gang's all here

Interviewing Sufi qawwali singer Asif Ali Khan at the recent Womad Taranaki was an experience. Not only does he arrive in the small porta-cabin at the side of one of the stages but so does the... > Read more

WOMAD ARTIST 2015: Barbarito Torres of the Buena Vista Social Club

WOMAD ARTIST 2015: Barbarito Torres of the Buena Vista Social Club

Anyone who has tried to translate between different languages knows the difficulties: it's not just vocabulary but nuance, idioms, inflection and humour which can get lost somewhere along the... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

The Specials: The Best of the Specials (EMI)

The Specials: The Best of the Specials (EMI)

Listening to this 20-track compilation (which comes with an excellent DVD of videos and film footage) reminds you just how reductive the recent ska revivalist bands have been. In the late... > Read more

Various Artists: The Birth of Surf Guitar Vol 3 (Ace/Border)

Various Artists: The Birth of Surf Guitar Vol 3 (Ace/Border)

It seems odd that surf guitar rock should be so enduring. For some it was just a brief phenomenon of the late Fifties/early Sixties but here at Elsewhere we've recently written about surf... > Read more