Friday, March 9, 2012

CD Review: Toni Kitanovski & Cherkezi Orchestra's 'Shukar'

Toni Kitanovski & Cherkezi Orchestra

Gypsy band music has been universal ever since the popularity of Besh O Drom and others that have paved the way for global acceptance of such an incredible (and danceable) musical delight. The Macedonian-based Toni Kitanovski is joined by the Cherkezi Orchestra on his latest release, Shukar. Shukar, which means, "good," is probably an understatement if one is referring to the music. The music takes on gypsy qualities, but explores inter-related musical influences, too. For instance, "Addis Abeba" examines a little Ethiopian jazz, while "Lagrimas Negras" looks at a Cuban and Latin jazz influence. The trumpet is a powerful instrument that nicely accompanies the giddy and jazzy guitar playing. The vocals of Tehamana Skenderovska are also very appealing. The twelve tracks contain vocals, trumpet, tapan drum, tarabuka, bass, melodica, french horn, organ, and guitars, which round out the musical experiences. Toni & Cherkezi Orchestra touches on Latin, jazz, gypsy, and experimental music that is sure to elicit happiness in one's heart. ~ Matthew Forss

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