Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Le Trio Joubran and "Majaz"

Le Trio Joubran are three brothers dedicated to art of the oud. The lute-like oud has many centuries of playing excellence behind it. The Palestinian oud exponents Trio Joubran, brothers all, extend and transform that tradition into today in their excellent recent album Majaz (World Village 479032). This time out the three oudists are joined by a percussionist who plays the dumbek and framedrum among other things, adding a driving rhythmic component that gives great dimension to the music.

The three oud players cover a set of music that has moments of haunting yearning, introspection and infectious momentum, alternatingly. With the addition of the percussionist they at times almost sound like a mid-eastern parallel to a group like Oregon, taking the folk-classical art tradition of their instruments and adding a contemporary component. It is a greatly successful venture, movingly performed.

The title cut "Majaz" for example sets up a thoughtful ostinato, then weaves memorable melodic two-oud lines overtop while the percussionist does quite excellent things with the pulse.

This group is a treasure. Majaz is a modern oud classic. I love it!

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