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Turquoise: Mosaic of Anatolia

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Turquoise, an large improv group led by Turkish/Danish drummer Atilla Engin, takes the idea of world music and applies it in a much broader sense than the usual. First and foremost on this record, of course, is traditional Anatolian music—which constitutes three tracks. These reconstructions enrich the original Turkish melodies with African percussion and Afro-American jazz harmonies. The remainder of the record consists of a highly varied mixture of cultural elements, native instruments, and percussion from Anatolian, African, and Afro-American jazz traditions. Half the tracks are recorded live, while the remainder come from the studio.

As you might imagine, Turquoise delivers anything but the expected. While portions of this record sag from too much drab synth texture, other parts scintillate because they cover a wide dynamic range and make effective use of the huge variety of percussion available to this group. So it's a mixed bag: Mosaic of Anatolia is a real mosaic of sound, where you're likely to find some really inventive and satisfying music packed together with the occasional static and over-produced tune. Take your pick—listen carefully.


Track Listing: Mosaic of Anatolia; Magical Zurna on the Run; Yemen Turkusu; In Love With Blue; Gekte Yildiz Ay Misin?; Gilharmonic; Leyla; Perquana Amerikana; Scrumpy Feel; Istanbul and Beyond.

Personnel: Atilla Engin: misc. percussion, voice, electric piano; Gilad: misc. percussion; Frank Colon: misc. percussion; Stephan Crump: electric and acoustic bass; Ray Ippolito: guitar, synth guitar; Hale Birgl: vocals; Adam Klipple: keyboard; John Kruth: African bamboo flute, kaval, mouth harmonica, zurna; Dan Jordan: tenor and alto saxes, flute.

Title: Mosaic of Anatolia | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Istanbul Records


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