If I'd Been Born an Eagle


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If I'd Been Born an Eagle Review

by Chris Nickson

Huun-Huur-Tu's third album shows the group broadening the scope of its music. As the ensemble members themselves point out, there's a great deal more to Tuvan music than throat singing, although it might well be the form that grabs a listener's attention. This is their attempt to show both the historical and contemporary colors of Tuva, with old melodies but also many from the last 30 years that have become a part of the national consciousness. And they also explore the inevitable connections between Russian and Tuvan music. But throughout it all, the rhythm is that of the horse, which is that of Tuva. That's not to say they've made a turn away from their trademark throat singing. It's still here, and still gloriously otherworldly, but at the same time incredibly accessible and completely human, with plenty of passion and all the soul of the best of Memphis.

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