Djelem is a Gypsy group based in Montréal, Québec, lead by Anatoli Iakovencho, a Ukrainian Gypsy. What differentiate Gypsy musicians from any other musicians is that a Gypsy is at home everywhere they go. And this is exactly the case with Iakovencho. As he says it himself, "Gypsies take the colors of the new surroundings." In Souvenirs, their second CD, this is what we find. On the one hand, unable to deny his Ukrainian roots, his music keeps an East European flavor, but as the same time, you can feel the Canadian influence, especially with a folk-type acoustic guitar playing similar to the one found among Quebecois singers. Moreover, he wrote a song titled "Montréal-Québec" to celebrate his new home and he also rearranged a well-known French Canadian song. The word "djelem" means let's go, meaning what it is to be a Gypsy, open to new experiences. The group includes as well Moldavian violinist Sergeï Trofanov, Claude Simard on double bass and keyboards, and Sonya Sanscartier on vocals. Romantic, nostalgic, serene, from the heart, open to the world! Gypsy music with a new flavor!
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AllMusic Review by Bruno Deschênes