The Burning Bush

The Best of Yiddish, Klezmer & Sephardic Music

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A rather grand undertaking by the Burning Bush ensemble (Britain's premier Jewish music troupe), this album is an attempt to cover the traditions of Jewish music from Germany/Poland (the Yiddish part), Eastern European instrumentals (the klezmer part), and Spain (the Sephardic part). Of the three basic forms mentioned there, the best work is probably done on the Sephardic songs, wherein Lucie Skeaping is given the opportunity to showcase her voice. As it happens, the Burning Bush also has several other albums on the same label, some of which may be better suited to display the vocal and instrumental abilities of the ensemble. The weakest portion of the album is most probably the klezmer undertakings. For good klezmer music, there are a million possible bands recorded that could probably perform something better (the Klezmonauts, the Klezmatics, and the Klezmer Conservatory are notable ones). For Jewish music, this is a good compilation to collect all (well, most -- the Middle Eastern traditions are left out) of the major traditions into a single disc. Still, it would certainly be worthwhile to seek out separate albums for the various genres, as they are certainly completely different sounds altogether. For a single disc overview of a multitude of traditions, it's not bad; a better option exists though.

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