Maayan Nidam / Mayaan Nidam

Nightlong

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AllMusic Review by

Maayan Nidam's first full-length effort under her own name might actually be one of the most remarkable albums of 2009 for its fusion of multiple sources alone, but unsurprisingly, it's what she does with them that's the kicker. Drawing on vocal and musical recordings made in Cuba the previous year by the Powershovelaudio label, Nidam creates what might almost be the anti-Buena Vista Social Club approach -- instead of tastefully preserving older styles, Nightlong is about reworking performances into a fully electronic realm. On "Que Te Has Creido," the brief but killer vocal snippet Nidam uses as a focus for her snaky, clipped arrangement shines, while "Dime Si Eres Tu" and "Milagro" step back to allow an older form of swing to dominate. "Soltando Chipsa," with its abbreviated piano breaks, a recurring chant, and what could almost be a micro-salsa arrangement, is another standout, while the bass crawl of "La Noche de Ayer," matched with a simple but stellar guitar part that almost calls prime Depeche Mode to mind, is mighty stuff all around, a perfect, tense burn further accentuated by the vocals.

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