Yuval Ron Ensemble
Seeker of Truth: The Yuval Ron Ensemble Live at the World Festival of Sacred Music (Yuval Ron Music, 2011)
Recorded live at the World Festival of Sacred Music 2008, this CD is simply spectacular. Sweetly soaked in the Sufi traditions of Turkey and Pakistan with dashes of traditional Iraqi Jewish song, traditional Moorish song and contemporary compositions, the Yuval Ron Ensemble unearths the meditative and contemplative on Seeker of Truth. Dripping with harmonium, duduk, kanun, dumbek, riqq, clarinet and some truly extraordinary vocals, Seeker of Truth is artfully elegant and masterfully wrought.
Intended as “a pioneering endeavor in bribing together the Middle Eastern and South Asian vocal and musical traditions,” the Yuval Ron Ensemble triumphs from the opening “La Ilaha Illah Lah” through to the beauty of “Nour El Kadhar” to the exoticism of “Erev Shel Shoshanim/Shalom-Salam” with music by Yosef Hadar through to the inexpressibly lovely “Lama Bada.” Of course, how could you possibly go wrong with the extraordinary vocals by Arabic singer Najwa Gilbran or special guest Pakistani qawwali master Sukhawat Ali Khan?
Fans will know the Yuval Ron Ensemble from Under the Olive Tree and Tree of Life. Now the really good news is that there is a feature length film of Seeker of Truth, directed by Mischa Hedges out on DVD with concert footage from the concert. This is certainly worth a look as the group has as a part of the concert a performance by the whirling dervish Aziz.
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