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Silent City by Kayhan Kalhor
Released: Jul 2008
Label: World Village
Silent City is a stunning piece of work. A collaboration between Iranian kamancheh virtuoso Kayhan Kalhor and the Brooklyn Rider string quartet, the instrumental release chronicles -- in sound -- Saddam Hussein's gassing of the Kurdish city of Hallabjah. At its heart is the 29-minute title track, which takes us through the aftermath: a stunned, numb near-silence, the stirrings of survivors, eventual fury. Katrina survivors have been moved by this genre-straddling piece, and indeed, the release is dedicated to decimated cities through history. Heavy stuff, but undeniably brilliant.
Sarah Bardeen

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