Album Review: Buddha Bar XVII by Ravin.

Globetrotting Buddha... coming soon to Marrakesh and Casablanca!

Globetrotting Buddha… coming soon to Marrakesh and Casablanca!

The always-inspiring musical journey of the iconic Buddha Bar series keeps going on (thankfully for us fans!), now reaching its seventeenth opus, and as it is customary, compiled by DJ Ravin.

For this volume, the sun, sand and shades of the ever mesmerizing lands of Morroco are the main source of inspiration, that feature a sultry mélange of chill out, world music, lounge and deep house poised to launch an enjoyable listening experience, characterized by a sophisticated kind of exoticism throughout both discs.

This double-disc volume is comprised by:

Guembri (Disc 1) with 16 tracks and 78 minutes long – Named after the three-stringed Morrocan bass, typically used by the Gnawa people in Morocco and North Africa, as well as Berber and Touareg musicians.

The first discs features a smooth and sensual mix of chillout, loungy and world influences. Starting with the dreamy and chilling vibes of Mihai Toma’s ‘Ena’, this first track sets the perfect mood for a musical journey full of delicious and enjoyable beats, as well as a variety of vocal styles throughout this disc, as found in tracks such as ‘Marra Fi Ghnina’  by Lebanese electro-pop band ‘Soapkills’ (featuring Yasmine Hamdan) and Fuad Almuqtadidr’s beautiful delivery  ‘Bhromor Koio Giya’ amongst others. An opus inspired by Morocco may be, but also coming with a dose of Indian flare, as featured in tracks such as the beautifully arranged ‘Sunrise over Ganges’ by Thor and ‘Stronger by Me (Kerala Beach Mix)’ by Soul Avenue to name a few.

Some of the major highlights of this disc arrive mid-way into the set, with Yuyuma’s amazing ‘Chill Out remix’ of the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain’s rendition of the classic ‘Bang Bang’, followed by the simply stunning ‘Damas’ by Fakear, just exquisite music full of passion and flawless arrangements throughout!

Smooth jazzy lounge arrives with Bobbi Walker’s Spellbreaker (Deep chill deluxe), then continuing with a mix of lively world beats and house before wrapping up with the African inspired ‘Kilimanjaro’ by Lucci Capri, setting a good prelude for the second disk.

 

Bendir (Disc 2) with 15 tracks and 78 minutes long –  Named after the popular round frame drum, widely used in North African, also present in the Sufi musical tradition.

This disc starts more decisively upbeat, featuring a great selection of world music and deep house tracks throughout the set. Pattern Drama’s catchy theme, ‘Girar O Mundo’, featuring Candida’s Portuguese-sung vocals mark the beginning of this second disc, then continuing with ‘Lik’ by Moroccan singer OUM, graced by a great remix by Mashti and Polyesta, right before kicking into the lively and energetic track ‘Mantra’ by Jose Manuel, which takes you into a South-Asian journey complete with marvelous instrumentation featuring drumbeats, sitar and vocals that make one of the definitive highlights of this second disc.

Further highlights include DJ Ravin’s own delivery in ‘Sakar Melody’ featuring Theodossi Spassov’s mesmerizing Kaval playing, that along with Ravin and Thor’s mix bring about a fantastic result. World influences keep gracing the listening experience with Thor’s ‘Punjab Funk’, before a visit to the African musical tradition with two brilliant remixes by Captain Planet in ‘Wad Alnuba’ by Alsarah & The Nubatones, wich brings the Nubian folk sound into a more distinctive electronic realm; similarly achieved with the lively vocals of Guinean singer Sara in the track ‘Tounkan’.

With the upcoming Buddha Bar openings in Marrakesh and Casablanca, this Morocco-inspired album comes in a timely fashion. Remaining faithful to the musical concept of the series, yet standing out on its own musical identity, this is a musical journey worth the ride.

Essential tracks:

Disc 1.- ‘Sunrise Over Ganges’ by Thor, ‘Bang Bang’ (Yuyuma Chill out remix) by The Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain, ‘Damas’ by Fakear.

Disc 2.- ‘Mantra’ by Jose Manuel, ‘Sakar Melody’ (Ravin & Thor mix) by Ravin, ‘Wad Alnuba (Captain Planet remix) by Alsarah & The Nubatones.

Available worldwide from 4th of March 2015 in iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and major music retail sites.

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