Album Review

Halo, Abdel Hadi & The El Gusto Orchestra of Algiers – “Abdel Hadi Halo & The El Gusto Orchestra of Algiers” – [Honest Jon’s]

surferrosa   11/15/2011   CD, International

This is a project lead by Algerian Pianist Abdel Hadi Halo as an effort to bring the North African Chaabi musical style (popular in the 40s and 50s) back to light. This Cd was released alongside a documentary attempting to track down this music’s remaining proponents. Hadi leads this 42 piece orchestra comprised of musicians from 70-90 years old who have been playing for decades.There is an impressive variety of instruments here including banjo, violin, darbouka and oud to name a few. The music here is soulful, quite beautiful, energetic and often played in a call and response style. All tracks contain vocals, skillful instrumentation and a traditional Arabic/Middle Eastern sound. -Surfer Rosa

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