Friday, August 29, 2008

v/a "Music from Ethiopia: the central highlands, the desert nomads & Eritrea"

Yeah I know, Eritrea is not part of Ethiopia anymore, but it was when they put this disc together. This record does not have any of that Swinging Addis jazz stuff on it, but is rather a collection of traditional music, split up into those three conceptual parts of the country. It is all a bit ethnographic. The track that makes the most impact on me is the record's opener, a piece of liturgical music from the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (a monophysite Christian church that has developed separately from the rest of Christendom). It consists of people chanting while a priest bangs on some enormous drum, all sounding very strange and otherworldly. I could see how this king of music would make you feel like you were leaving behind earthly things and ascending to the divine, and my current mission is to get an entire album of this sort of thing. Maybe I should have though of this when I was actually in Ethiopia. Mmmm.
image source


Anonymous said...

FYI, it's not monophysite, rather miaphysite. It is mischaracterized as monophysite by scholars who haven't done their research properly.

Ammonite said...

I'm mesmerised by the print, which looks like a Timorous Beasties design. Chic.

ian said...

Anonymous, can you explain this important distinction?