Friday, March 7, 2014

CD Review: Painted Caves' Self-Titled Arab-American Release

Painted Caves
Painted Caves
Primitive Records

Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based, Painted Caves, presents us with an exciting Arab-American release of guitar fusion and world music on their self-titled release. The group is headed by Ali Lubbad on vocals, guitars, trap set, and Arabic percussion, while Mike Kashou plays the oud, bass, percussion, trumpet, piano, and adds background vocals. There are also other musicians on Native American flute, qanun, congas, didgeridoo, and conch shells. Anyone familiar with Wisconsin music will be familiar with the great Paul Cebar on backup vocals. There is an emotive fusion of instruments that come together to form interesting unions that seem to work just fine. The instrumental arrangements possess a little psych/experimental sound indicative of music from the 1970's in parts of the Middle East and South Asia. The tracks are named as cleverly as anything by Dengue Fever, which provides some influence here; especially on "The Behavior Of A Certain Snake," "Paper Tigers," "Man Is Coy Behind Animal Tears," and "Morse Code." Anyone interested in various traditional instruments played in a contemporary setting will love it. Painted Caves emerges as a great work of art! ~ Matthew Forss

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