Albert Kuvezin and Yat-Kha - Re-Covers
Albert Kuvezin and Yat-Kha
World Village (www.worldvillagemusic.com)
Definitely amusing as well as being oddly impressive, Re-Covers is the work of Tuvan throat singer Albert Kuvezin and his band. It seems Kuvezin was more heavily influenced by hard rock, avant punk, folk and reggae than one might think. So, somewhat mind-bogglingly, he proceeds to serve up his own sub-Siberian versions of such songs as Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart," the Rolling Stones' "Play With Fire," Hank Williams' "Ramblin' Man" and even (I swear I'm not kidding) Iron Butterfly's "In a Gadda da Vida." It's such an insanely improbable idea that actually hearing the result will have you admiring Kuvezin's sincerity, as well as have you smirking uncontrollably. I must say he makes "When the Levee Breaks" more bluesy than Led Zeppelin could ever hope to, brings the Williams tune an interesting level of menace and puts a galloping, groaning feel into a Motorhead song called "Orgasmatron" (previously unfamiliar to me) that has got to be better than the original. Plus, you simply must hear what he does with Bob Marley's "Exodus," Santana and Peter Green's "Black Magic Woman" and a few songs not from the Western pop realm. As expected, the singing sounds like Leon Redbone mating with the Cookie Monster (that's what I like about it), while the combination of native and non-Tuvan instruments might put back some of the familiar ground that keeps getting yanked out from under the listener's feet. This album really isn't my taste, but it's deliciously bizarre and hard to to hang on to. If you're looking for music that's truly different, your search ends here. - Tom Orr
Listen to a few audio samples
The band's web site: www.yat-kha.com
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