Music of Tunisia
(ARC, 2004)

Music of Tunisia contains 10 songs performed by Ez-Zouhour. These are traditional songs and music played on traditional instruments that are common to Oriental music, including the oud, qanum, nay, kamandjah, double bass, darbouka, tar and duf, plus the bender (which is not common to Oriental music).

The group was founded in Vienna in 1992 under the musical direction of Imed Ben Hassine from Tunisia. Their repertoire includes Tunisian music and Arab music in general. This CD focuses only on Tunisian traditions.

Tunisian music has traces of various cultures such as the Arabic, Andalusian and Ottoman. Thus, there is great variety in the sound and certain characteristics that are unique to this musical culture.

I'd recommend this CD by Ez-Zouhour if you have any interest in Tunisian music. The instruments are traditional too, so the overall outcome is highly entertaining. Western ears will be enchanted by the melody and the songs, especially track one, "Sidi Mansour/Baba Bahri," which is quite lively. Nearly all of them bring to mind belly dancing and Eastern culture.

The CD is ideal for gatherings and lively parties. Though the lyrics are in the Tunisian tongue, they are pleasant to the ear. Two or three pieces are a bit monotonous but the rest are very enjoyable. They bring you the spirit of the East and the mystique of their culture.

review by
Liana Metal

29 December 2007

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