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    Trio Mandili – Psalm 50

    There will be no reviews either today or tomorrow as Orthodox Christians observe Christmas Eve and the Nativity on what was always the Ecumenical Church Calendar until the devising of the modern Gregorian Calendar, so for those who hold to the Councils, today is December 24.  We wish you a Merry Christmas (again), and leave you with today’s selection, a hymn of wailing by Saint King David by the Georgian folk group, Trio Mandili.  Be well.

  • Music

    Egari, Paata Chakaberia – In Qvevri Veritas. Original Soundtrack

    Egari and Paata Chakaberia provide a stunningly good instrumental music from the Republic of Georgia serving originally as a soundtrack to a film about Georgian winemaking.  From the release’s Bandcamp site: “This music was composed as the soundtrack for Leonid Parfyonov’s documentary In Qvevri Veritas. The film is dedicated to the traditional Georgian winemaking, surely, we couldn’t do without Georgian music. We recorded 13 tracks, including folk tunes from various regions and corners of Georgia, as well as my own compositions.”

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    Hadi Bastani and Maryam Sirvan – trans​.​placed

    It’s wonderful to hear one of my favorite sound designers, Maryam Sirvan come up with new material.  She is paired with fellow expatriate Hadi Bastani in this 20-minute mini-LP of electroacoustics and field recordings.  From the release’s Bandcamp site: “Stretching from Berlin to Tbilisi, trans.placed starts with the simple act of opening a door. This everyday gesture forms the fabric of this dense, meticulous and profound work which obsesses over the dramatic sonic transitions which occur when we move from outside to indoors. What sounds come with us as we make this transition? What new soundscapes do we encounter? And…

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    Ani Zakareishvili – Fallin

    Ani Zakareishvili has produced a work of genius – something that feels like it would have fit in the classic movie The Shining, with its surreal, hazy feel to it.  From Warm Winters Ltd.’s Bandcamp site: “Tbilisi, Georgia-based artist Ani Zakareishvili joins the Warm Winters Ltd. roster with a hazy, phantasmic EP titled ‘Fallin’. Centred around crackling piano loops and edited snippets of Eartha Kitt’s interview from 1982, Zakareishvili ponders on the meaning of “falling in love” and reveals a deeply resonant layer of her work. This is hypnagogic, hushed music, untroubled yet profound, which somehow waltzes past you in…

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    Mikael Tariverdiev – Visions in Black & White

    Mikael Tariverdiev was a Russian cinema and TV composer of Armenian extraction but raised Tbilisi, Georgia, a true man of the Soviet world.  Though he was quoted as not particularly liking jazz, he was as good an improviser that Russia ever produced. From the release’s Bandcamp page: “Visions in Black and White is a collection of rare jazz and improvised themes by one of the greatest Russian film composers Mikael Tariverdiev (1931-1996). Transferred from the original tapes and beautifully remastered, these recordings manage to retain their original ambience and capture a master at work. Originally composed for cinema and TV movies…

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    Koma Stark – Kelesho

    Antonovka Records have had an astounding year releasing not only music from Russia’s hinterlands and Central Asia, but even from places like Georgia.  This album documents music by Kurdish-speaking Yezidis, who suffered horribly over the past few years in places like Iraq and Syria.  Koma Stark play traditional Yezidi folk songs, and they currently reside in Tbilisi, Georgia.

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    Maryam Sirvan – Feast On My Body

    We have to wait eight more days to hear the complete work, but given the two tracks Maryam Sirvan has made available, this will be worth the wait.  There were two artists which came to mind while listening to the tracks over and over – Tim Buckley at his most experimental, and ‘Dogs Blood Rising‘-era Current 93.  This should be seen as an electroacoustic album, and would compare very favorably to those artists like Bernard Parmegiani who could depict a hellish landscape in what some wrongly think is an academic medium.  This album is truly that weird, and it sounds…

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    Kimilia – Chants d’un temps, ანუ ადრინდელი სიმღერები

    I can’t imagine there being traditional music more pleasant to the ear than that of Georgian polyphony.  Whether it is in an ecclesiastical setting or around the dinner table, the Georgians are incredible singers, and this particular band, Kimilia, do a phenomenal job interpreting songs that go as far back as to the country’s medieval period.  Stunning!