New Reviews: July 27, 2001

Desert Rainbow
Tropical Music

SongLine co-founders, Phil Drummy and George Grifsas, capture the heart and soul of the aboriginal music from Australia on their newest album, Desert Rainbow. Additionally, traditional instruments and styles from Scotland, India, Asia and the Mediterranean are combined with Aboriginal music from Australia. Over 30 different musical instruments can be heard on Desert Rainbow. A few of the instruments include, didgeridoo, ocarina, boomerang percusion, djembe, bansuri flutes, bouzouki, baglama and Scottish whistles.
Overall, the combination of traditional and contemporary instruments and rhythms was an amazing feat that was accomplished superbly. Aboriginal lyrics and vocals by Rrurrambu Burarrawanga, Waggan Yuulunbrrgn, Barama, Wirrapunda and the Anangu children make Desert Rainbow an essential album for fans of aboriginal Australian/Fusion music.

Sabor Profundo
Orquesta America
Real Rhythm Records

Cuba's Orquesta America has been playing cha-cha-cha music for the past 60 years. Orquesta America remains the most popular Charanga orchestra in Cuba today. Sabor Profundo showcases their musical talents in a variety of different Cuban styles including, mambo-cha, son, cha-cha-cha, guarach-son, guaracha, bolero-son, bolero and danzon-cha. Vocals are present throughout the album. Sabor Profundo is yet another high quality recording from Real Rhythm Records. Fans of Latin music in general, and Cuban cha-cha-cha/son/mambo/guaracha in particular, will definitely enjoy the music of Orquesta America.

Happy Daze
Battlefield Band
Temple Records

After nearly 30 years of creating and performing Scottish music, the Battlefield Band emerges with a fresh, new album of folk music from Scotland. The Battlefield Band comprises the musical talents of Alan Reid, John McCusker, Karine Polwart and Mike Katz. Beautiful vocals and delicate guitar work from Karine Polwart make this album a gem. In addition, bagpipes, whistles, cittern and fiddle can be heard on a few of the instrumentals. Eleven heart-felt songs, ballads, jigs and reels demonstrate the band's continued ability to produce great Scottish folk songs with catchy rhythms, melodies and Scottish lyrics. Their creative ingenuity is certainly evident on Happy Daze.

Reviews by Matthew J. Forss.