Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

Traditional Sufi Qawwalis-Live in London, Vol. IV

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Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan was the greatest qawwali singer of his generation as well as the most famous. In 1989, Ali Khan and his ensemble gave a unique performance at the Kufa Gallery, in London, England under the auspices of the Sama Performing Arts Network (SPAN). The qawwalis were sung in a traditional format and in a distinctly classical idiom. The full concert is available on four CDs, this being the fourth installment.

All three tracks on this CD maintain a similar style. The impact of vigorous hand clapping, both repetitive and forceful, tends to produce a trance-like state in the listener. In addition, Ali Khan's powerful tenor voice makes this music simply awe-inspiring. Although it's a highly religious and devotional form of expression, outsiders and lay persons alike nonetheless can appreciate qawwali music. Its practitioners create an atmosphere that is truly rapturous and transcendental. The highlight of this album is probably "Traditional Qawwali in Ragas Marwa & Bhatiyar" a stirring piece that sings praises to the Islamic prophet Mohammed.

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