Various Artists

Gypsy Dances

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A collection of Hungarian gypsy music culled from three previous releases on ARC Records. The featured bands are Meta and Andras Farkas Jr.'s ensemble. The main attraction here, however, is the guest cimbalom player Kalman Balogh, who plays on a number of tracks with Meta. His speed is beyond the normal level by a good measure, with the technical proficiency to make it work. Beata Salamon and Sandor Barbocz, the violinists, also provide a stunning body of work in this presentation. For inquisitive listeners wishing to make inroads into the Hungarian gypsy traditions, this wouldn't make a bad choice for a start at a discount level, although larger names, such as Taraf de Haidouks, would certainly please as well or better. Pick it up as a fan of the music, or as a penny-pinching newcomer, and enjoy the proficiency either way.

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