Lucid Culture

JAZZ, CLASSICAL MUSIC AND THE ARTS IN NEW YORK CITY

Album of the Day 3/31/11

If you’re wondering why there hasn’t been more activity here lately, it’s because we’ve been busy behind the scenes putting on some special fabric which, TEPCO assures us, will keep the radioactivity out. Oh yeah – we’ve also been feverishly compiling a new NYC live music calendar for April and May, coming tomorrow along with other stuff. In the meantime, as we do every day, our 1000 best albums of all time countdown continues all the way to #1. Thursday’s album is #670:

Ali Jihad Racy – Ancient Egypt

One of the world’s most extraordinary Middle Eastern musicians, Dr. Racy is a multi-instrumentalist equally skilled on the buzuq (similar to the bouzouki), ney flute, rabab lute and violin, among other instruments. This 1993 suite, based on selections from the Book of the Dead, is both homage to and an attempt to recreate the sounds of the age of the pharaohs. It follows a trajectory from the stark ney piece, The Lamentations of Isis, to the lush, rich jangle and clank of the buzuq and rabab in The Land Of The Blessed. Hymn to Osiris is balmy and otherwordly; The Boat of a Million Years, a ghostly, haunting tone poem, is the centerpiece. Racy follows that with the quiet, dreamy The Holy Lotus (the drug of choice among many around the region in those days) and the self-explanatory Funeral Processsion, which actually isn’t as dark as you might expect. After that, the gloom lifts with Hymn for the Sunrise and The Triumph of the Deceased, ending on an optimistic note. Here’s a random torrent via Like a Raging Bull.

March 30, 2011 - Posted by | lists, middle eastern music, Music, music, concert, world music | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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