Mamer, Eagle

April 16, 2009 | Leave a Comment


The production on this album is astounding. If folk music from the western Xinjiang province is not your bag then at least marvel at the rich sound of this Chinese gem. Mamer sings with a warm bassy croak while gentle guitar and lilting dombra fill in the gaps and if at times the morose low-fi threatens to teeter your speakers off the table and disturb sleeping dogs — as on Mountain Wind (aka While My Catarrh Gently Weeps) – you soon get used to the sonic depression and to be honest I actually started to find the whole effect kind of soothing and, whisper it, accessible.

Of course I’ve no idea what he’s singing about (for what it’s worth it don’t sound like no Chinese I ever heard) but to help you along, the tracks for the most part are given simple one-word English monikers — Eagle, Blackbird, Man – and seem designed to evoke wistful contemplation of mother Earth as you light another scented candle. This is no bad thing.

If the language is alien then hopefully the sounds won’t be. Fans of Led Zep’s Bron-Yr-Aur will love Celebration and while overall the album stays on the introspective side of chilled there’s some beautiful melodic respite in Blackbird.


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