Monday, June 30, 2008

Hala Strana - Heave The Gambrel Roof (2007)

Hala Strana is a name used by Steven R. Smith for releasing his experimental folk-inspired music. The man is of considerable talent, even crafting his out instruments and well as belonging to the notable Jewelled Antler collective. The roots of the style of music Smith specializes in can be found amongst the folk traditions of Eastern Europe. Thankfully, rather than merely copy the native music, Smith builds upon it to create a fresh but grounded sound. The musicianship and composition is excellent, showing off the talent and effort poured into its creation. However, I could stand for it to be a bit more exploratory, such as the amazing band Kemialliset Ystävät (who I've forgone posting because they were on nodata and now on sordo). Heave The Gambrel Roof doesn't have any vocals, which is good and bad. On one hand it leaves you wondering how they'd sound, yet on the other it allows you to focus on the instrumental sound and prevents it from becoming too close to other acts like Beirut and A Hawk And A Hacksaw. Extremely enjoyable if you are a fan of Balkanesque folk music that's been on the rise as of late.

To be had here (320 VBR kbps):
Hala Strana - Heave The Gambrel Roof

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