Balkanarama

Nonstop

  • AllMusic Rating
    9
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

A small Balkan ensemble hailing from Seattle, Balkanarama here presents Nonstop, their debut album on their own private label. The music has a thick groove throughout. This is music to be danced to, not just listened to. The beat is omnipresent in here, with frame drums providing any loose rhythms not already provided by the swells of vocals, strings, and horns. The album covers a decent amount of ground, essentially making covers of various obscure cassette releases from throughout the Balkan regions. They start out with music from the Roms of Macedonia, then move on to Vojvodina and Romanian Rom musics. From there, it moves into a slightly more somber mood for a few songs, though somber is something of a misnomer. The lyrical material is somewhat more downbeat, although the players attempt to keep roughly the same vibe. From here, they kick the tempo back up for dance numbers from Albania, the Peloponessos, Bulgaria, and the like. The groove continues on through the end of the album. These people are spreading the musical culture of the Balkans through examples, as well as recommendations of other major artists within the liner notes. The goal would appear to be building a larger fanbase for the genres, and this album is a start for it. Pick it up for a nice dance groove, or as a nice look into the basic dance music of the Balkans

blue highlight denotes track pick