Ludo Luda: Fools Fancy

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Oddly, no date or source of recording is given for the material on Csokolom's CD, which from all indications (i.e., crowd applause at the end of numbers) was done before a live audience. Like its predecessor, it's engaging and rhythmically bouncy, with plenty of interplay among two violins, kontra, double bass, and vocals. The repertoire (almost entirely different from their first album) is mostly devoted to interpretations of traditional folk songs from Eastern Europe, particularly Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Yugoslavia. They do slip in a version of the "Pink Panther Theme," but that's very much an exception to their usual focus. This has a verve and humor lacking from many more traditional, reverent groups of this sort, as demonstrated by the exuberant scat vocals on the Bulgarian dance number "Gankino Horo." Lyrics in both English and native languages are given in the sleeve.

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