Hasidic New Wave


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The multicultural synergy that this New York avant-klezmer band attempts on their third album is apparent even in the song titles: "Purple Vishnu," "Benigni" (Roberto?), and "The Frank Zappa Memorial Bris." The music is just as far-ranging. The opener, "Purple Vishnu," suggests what Bitches Brew might have sounded like had Miles Davis been born in an Eastern European shtetl, while part one of "H.W.N." sounds like a variation on synagogue chanting and "Burkan Cocek" flirts with ska rhythms. Ironically enough, the title track doesn't betray much Jewish influence at all. It's just a classically beautiful tune. The common denominator here is the telepathic interplay of the band (captured with warmth and depth by producer Kramer) and the catchy but challenging songwriting. Only the dated throwaway "Giuliani Uber Alles" falls flat.

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