Marta Topferova - Flor Nocturna
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Marta Topferova
Flor Nocturna
World Village (

The idea of a young Czech woman performing South American-inspired music might have seemed odd prior to Marta Topferova's arrival on the scene, but she continues to successfully channel the sounds of Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina and elsewhere on her latest recording. A chance encounter with the music of Chile's Inti Illimani while growing up in Prague spurred Topferova to journey to Spanish-speaking countries in both hemispheres, listening and learning along the way. Her acquired fluency in the Spanish language and mastery of the guitar-like Venezuelan cuatro were in full bloom by the time of her last album, 2005's La Marea. Like that disc, this one is a continually warm and engaging mix of Topferova's hushed, sensual singing perfectly matched by her crisp cuatro strumming. The all-acoustic accompaniment is mostly quite sparse- there's bass, strings, reeds, accordion and percussion involved, but never all at once. The feel you get is Topferova's intimacy with this music and how intimately she wants to share it. She shares it beautifully, on slow, aching tracks and snappier pieces. Topferova composed the bulk of the album, with two songs written by Argentine folkie Atahualpa Yupanqui slipping right in. This not only sounds simply wonderful, but perfectly authentic as well. - Tom Orr

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"Zamba Gris"

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