Ana Alcaide: La cantiga del fuego (ARC)

 |   |  <1 min read

Ana Alcaide: Khun caravan
Ana Alcaide: La cantiga del fuego (ARC)

Although perilously close to New Age music in places, this gently beguiling album should find wide favour because within it are familiar melodies and chord progressions found in Celtic folk (think Clannad) and Northern Europe, but she also brings North Africa sounds too which add exotic spice.

Quite a seductive mixture by this Spanish singer, songwriter and practitioner of the nyckelharpe (a bowed fiddle with a keyboard which apparently originated in Sweden).

And to blur the musical picture even further these 12 songs – embellished by santur and veena from India – are inspired by the city of Toledo and the exile of Sephardic Jews.

But rather than being a cosmopolitan melange and fragmented by so many elements, Alcaide's clarity of vision pulls all these threads together in a quietly charming, memorable and highly listenable journey through its influences as it evokes romantic or melancholy moods.

Gentle, almost medieval in places and it will win you by stealth.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to the Music of Afghanistan (RG/Southbound)

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to the Music of Afghanistan (RG/Southbound)

Although it would take an expert in this field to say whether this 15 track collection (with a bonus disc of mesmerising music by Ahmad Sham's qawwali group) is a fair overview, you can't help but... > Read more

Dirt Music: BKO (Glitterhouse/Yellow Eye)

Dirt Music: BKO (Glitterhouse/Yellow Eye)

In a way this album was inevitable -- although has come from an unexpected source. The whole "Sahara Blues" style of Etran Finatawa, Tinariwen and more recently Tamikrest has always... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

JAMAICA'S STUDIO ONE AND CLEMENT DODD: The focal point of reggae

JAMAICA'S STUDIO ONE AND CLEMENT DODD: The focal point of reggae

King Stitt is something to see all right. His glazed eyes appear to look in different directions. There are huge bags beneath them, his greying dreadlocks are tucked under a huge tea cosy, his wiry... > Read more

Vijay Iyer: Mutations (ECM/Ode)

Vijay Iyer: Mutations (ECM/Ode)

Pianist Vijay Iyer is not one to undersell himself and is certainly a genuinely intellectual guy but, as Elsewhere noted previously, you shouldn't let that come between you and his music.... > Read more