Bayarbaatar Davaasuren: The Art of Mongolian Khoomii (Arc Music)

 |   |  <1 min read

Bayarbaatar Davaasuren: Tungalag Buyant
Bayarbaatar Davaasuren: The Art of Mongolian Khoomii (Arc Music)

When I first witnessed a Mongolian throat singer some 30 years ago – and I did weirdly feel I was a witness at something beyond my comprehension – I asked someone where the feedback was coming from. Quite how a singer whose vocal range seemed to be in the lower register also managed that high whistling overtone sound remained a pleasant enigma.

This unedited recording by an acclaimed master of khoomii (throat singing) took place in an abbey in France – so has a real sonic breadth and resonance at higher volume – with Davaasuren also playing tovshuur (goat skin lute) and morin-khuur (two-stringed horse-hair fiddle). He is accompanied by the renown Chinbat Baasnkhuu on yatga (a bowed zither with adjustable bridges).

We'd concede an album of throat singing can be a hard listen – if sandpaper could sing in a bass baritone but also replicate a melodic and piercing whistle it might sound like this – but that doesn't deny the sheer emotional power here. Unless you are familiar with the style and quite a fan this intriguing but demanding album is probably is best enjoyed in small doses.

However, If you only buy one Mongolian throat singer album this month . . .

This album is on the very creditable Arc Music label out of Britain (see here) which Elsewhere commends. We have reviewed world music from the label frequently.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to Bellydance (Rough Guide/Southbound)

Various Artists: The Rough Guide to Bellydance (Rough Guide/Southbound)

As has been noted previously at Elsewhere, anyone interested in world music learns quickly to never judge an album by its cover. In many countries the cover is just the thing you wrap around the... > Read more

Dhoad Gypsies of Rajasthan: Times of Maharajas (ARC Music)

Dhoad Gypsies of Rajasthan: Times of Maharajas (ARC Music)

As the liner notes to this album remind us, the time of the Maharajas was – for the elite of course – a world of opulent palaces and bejeweled kings and courtiers. Musicians would be... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

ROBERT SCOTT RETURNS (2014): This quiet life

ROBERT SCOTT RETURNS (2014): This quiet life

Noel Gallagher once enviously said of Ian McLagan that he'd been enough of a jammy bastard to be in two great bands; the Small Faces and the Faces. We might say the same of Robert Scott of... > Read more

THE 2019 TARANAKI WOMAD TIMETABLE: The world in your backyard

THE 2019 TARANAKI WOMAD TIMETABLE: The world in your backyard

As anyone who comes to this site knows, Elsewhere has had a many decades long engagement and interest in music from other parts of the planet beyond home, London, New York, LA and so on. Right... > Read more