Ibro Lolov

Gypsy Music from Bulgaria

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The liner notes state that it is difficult to tell Bulgarian gypsy music from Bulgarian music in general. This adds further confirmation to an observation that wherever they go, the gypsies tend to assimilate to the music of the locals -- which they then proceed to play with great verve and proficiency. This album consists of instrumentals with a few vocal numbers mixed in. The instruments include the accordion (which is generally the lead and which is played by Lolov), the violin (which occasionally takes over the lead), guitar, bass, and drums. The pace is fast but usually not frenetic like that of other Eastern European gypsy bands. A good example of this is "Sofiyski Tantz (Dance From Sofia)," an instrumental which, like a couple of the other numbers, sounds a little bit Middle Eastern and a little bit like a fast tango. Another fun instrumental is "Koshnitcharka (Basket Maker)," which has a real lilt to it and provides variety. The vocalists would not pass muster on American Idol, but they impress with their sincerity. This disc can be recommended to any fan of gypsy or Bulgarian music.

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