Kayhan Kalhor, a virtuoso of a four-stringed Persian fiddle known as the kamancheh, collaborated with New York modernist string quartet, Brooklyn Rider, for SILENT CITY, after the ensemble travelled to his native Iran. This stirring collection finds his evocative leads meshing beautifully with the quartet's orchestrations on a series of movements based on Iranian folktales. A partnership eight years in the making, Kalhor westernizes his traditional playing with classical touches such as pizzicato while Brooklyn Rider likewise synthesizes the intricacies of Kalhor's Persian melodies. The results mesmerize. The title track, an elegy for Halabjah, a Kurdish city razed by Saddam Hussein, is passionate stunner that will haunt listeners long after the record's close.
AllMusic Review by Pat Sullivan