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Pepper Flower
Powerful and Sensual Middle Eastern/ Modern Mix, February 28, 2007
Listening to the first few bars of the first track, there is a strong percussive rhythm on the darbuka (Richard Khuzami) with outstanding improvisation, soft keyboards, and an Arabic male singer creating the feeling of being in a souk (bazaar or market place) in the Middle East .. You immediately know you're in for a thrilling musical experience. If you love the pure sounds of Middle Eastern, Greek, Caribbean, Latin/Spanish, ambient New Age and world/ international music, you will love this CD. This CD is a rare combination of global music that has a rich texture and spicey flavor which is sensual, powerful, sometimes romantic, and often ecstatic. An astonishing number of people orchestrated this CD: i37 musicans and singers are listed in the liner notes, 6 mix engineers, and 6 who helped arranged various tracks! This CD is a spiritual journey into the past as well as a testament to the music of here and now, celebrating today and the future. As Richard Khuzami states in the liner notes, "We are a sum of those who precede us."

The second track, "Burn that Beat" is a lively modern city sound with underlying Spanish/ Latino influences. Track # 3 "Nothing Lasts" is a lyrical and poetic masterpiece enhanced by the smokey satin voice of Anath Benais who shares the spotlight with Duke McVinnie as they reminisce about changing fortunes and the spiritual journey of life. On this track the Middle Eastern violin creates haunting soul searching musical paths. Track # 4, "Go with Me" beckons the listener into experiencing each moment to the fullest, it tempts the listener to take risks, to turn fantasy into reality, to live with passion and desire ...The sensual voice of Malika Zarra reminds one of the sultry sexy siren Natacha Atlas at her very finest moments.

Track # 5 is one of my favorites which includes some meandering Greek clarinet music played by Lefteris Bournias, outstanding solos by Omar Faruk Tekblek who provides magical Mediterranean sounds on the baglama saz (lute-like stringed instrument). There is a superb sax intro by Tom Smith which creates unexpected spine-tingling sensations that are indescribable. Track # 6, "Malfouf" is another outstanding piece with Middle Eastern rhythms which predominate. It includes the ney, zurna, and guitar to round out the magical music. Track #7, "The Chase" is a male-female dynamic chase which reflects the eternal forces of what happens when the yin and yang energies collide! Track # 10, "Mayflower's Daughter" is a story which unfolds about a Manhattan princess/uptown girl and a Marrakech son/lover. It belongs on the Top 10 list of a radio station it is that great! The musician pleads no matter how different their lives seem, no matter how the eastern and western world views collide, all that matters is love and how it will sustain them ... The music, the sentiment and the message on this CD islphenomenal. It sends a sensual and powerful message about different worlds uniting rather than dividing ...


- Erika Borsos
Pepper Flower
Global Rhythm
 
 
Richard Khuzami's name may not be that familiar to most world music heads, but his track record's certainly impressive: among other things, he assisted in the production of the opening996 Atlanta Olympic's, with Mickey Hart and Philip Glass, and worked on the production of Philip Glass's "Powaqqatsi" concert in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. A talented percussionist, Khuzami specializes in instruments hailing from North Africa,the Middle East, Anatolia and the Balkans. Just listening to the first few seconds of the CD's opening track, "Bazaar Bop," you'll quickly realize you're hearing a showcase for truly impressive talent with vision. Utilizing many guest musicians and several vocalist, the album incorporates many genres, including rap, reggae and pop, "fused" to a strong backbone of Middle Eastern music. Some of the English vocal arrangements may not be everyone's slice of McDonald's baklava, but the instrumental playing, particularly Khuzami's, is first-rate.

-Robert Kaye
Global Rhythm
Kaos World Music
Nice message, and a great find for lovers of Middle Eastern percussion and/or Arabic pop. Click here for more of this review: :http://www.earball.net/spintheglobe/reviews_2006/09_06.htm
Sound Roots
He's got a great new album out that draws from many traditions, including funk, jazz, and Bollywood, most with a Middle Eastern musical foundation... Click here for more of this review: http://soundroots.org/2006/07/face-of-lebanon.html
Anti War Songs
Calabash Music
Richard Khuzami, both in his role as musician and producer, has worked to produce and promote the finest in artistic achievement in World Music, with a special emphasis on the Eastern Mediterranean...Click here for more of this review:http://richardkhuzami.calabashmusic.com/
FUSED video Burn That Beat FUSED video Burn That Beat
Burn that Beat from FUSED was the #1 Ringtone Download on Flycell July 2-8.
Check it out
"BURN THAT BEAT" Video picked up by RockAmerica for National release

Burn that Beat on FLYCELL
     
  “my highlights for the year “(or ones which gave me great pleasure to listen to at any time) , and not necessarily released in 2006.  

Kim Sanders & Peter Kennard- Trance'n'Dancin
Emmanuel Jal & Abdel Gadir Salim- Ceasefire
Rachid Taha- Diwan 2
Spirit of Mambesak- Black Paradise
V/A- Traveler 06 (Six Degrees Records)
Duoud- Sakat
Richard Khuzami- Fused
Ali Farka Toure- Savane
Papua New Guinea Stringbands with Bob Brozman- Songs of the Volcano
Karsh Kale- Broken English
Te Vaka - Tutuki
Source- Tonight's African Jazz Band
V/A- One World Many Cultures
Ba Cissoko- Electric Griot Land
Idan Raichel Project


Hans Stoeve
Powerspot (not just a world music show)
2SER FM
listen online @ www.2ser.com
Wednesday Nights 1830-2030
 Sydney, Australia


Also, we had the following from WFMU:

Playlist for Transpacific Sound Paradise with Rob Weisberg
Saturdays 6pm - 9pm NY / NJ time on WFMU 91.1fm 90.1fm wfmu.org

December 30, 2006: Year End Sort of Retrospective

Artist - "Song" - Album (Label) *=New [Comments]

Rachid Taha - "Ecoute Moi Camarade" - Diwan 2 (Wrasse) *
Los Tucanes de Tijuana - "Jugo a la Vida" - Various Artists: Babel
(Concord) * [Film Soundtrack]
Los Amigos Invisibles - "All Day Today" - Super Pop Venezuela (Gozadera)
Lord Kitchener - "My Wife's Nightie" - Various Artists: London is the Place
for Me 2 (Honest Jons) *
Patriarcas de la Rumba - "Al Pasar La Barca" - Cosa Nostra (K Industria)
Maurice el Medioni - "Ana Ouana" - Descarga Oriental (Piranha) [With
Roberto Rodriguez]
Willie Colon - "Esta Navidad" - Asalto Navideno (Fania) * [Canta: Hector
Lavoe.  New Reissue.]
La Lupe - "Bomba Gitano" - They Call Me La Lupe (Fania) * [New Reissue.]
Africando - "Mario" - Ketukuba (Sterns) *
Nomo - "Divisions" - New Tones (Ubiquity)
Orchestra Lissanga - "Okuzua" - Various Artists: Sound Affects: Africa (Mr
Bongo) *
Salif Keita - "Kamoukie" - M'Bemba (Decca)
Kasai All-Stars - "Koyile / Nyeka Nyeka" - Various Artists: Congotronics 2
(Crammed Discs)
Stella Chiweshe - "Mhandu-Ye-Hove" - Double Check (Piranha)
Richard Khuzami - "Expulsion" - Fused (Dahdoo) [Maurice Chedid, vocals.]
Baba Zula - "Kisaltmalar" - Various Artists: Beyond Istanbul (Trikont)
[Brenna MacCrimmon, vocals.]
Fatme Serhan - "Ala Warag Il Foul" - Various Artists: Th!nk Global
Bellydance (World Music Network) *
Susheela Raman - "Chordiya" - Music for Crocodiles (Narada)
Joanna Slowinska - "St John Night Song" - Alive in Alchemia (Wydawnictwo)
Getatchew Mekuria - "Eywat Setenafegagn" - Moa Anbessa (Terp) * [With The
Ex]
Zagnut Orkestar - "Jarnana" - Sedam Macaka (Zagnut) [Jodi Hewat, vocals.]
Mahala Rai Banda - "Lest Sexy" - Various Artists: Electric Gypsyland 2
(Crammed Discs) *
Cibelle vs Kocani Orkestar - "Maxutu" - Various Artists: Electric Gypsyland
2 (Crammed Discs) *
Sutekh - "Yom Pom Pom" - Various Artists: The Klez-x Remixed (Nutmeats) *
Mexican Institute of Sound - "Que Rico" - Mejico Maxico (Nacional)
Julieta Venegas - "No Hace Falta" - Limon y Sal (Norte)
Extra Golden - "Osama Rach" - Ok-Oyot System (Thrill Jockey)
Hector Buitrago - "Damaquiel" - Conector (Nacional) *
M. Salim and Rosiah Chik - "Berdendang Sayang" - Various Artists: Rough
Guide to the Music of Malaysia (World Music Network)
Asha Bhosle - "Sun O Dilruba Dil Ki Yeh Sada" - Various Artists: Sitar Beat
(Guerrilla Reissues) * [With Annu Malik and Chorus]
 
   

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