French-Canadian Folklore hits the Club

Mélisande Electrotrad performing live with guest artists Yaëlle Azoulay, Greg Krypto Selinger, and Yves Lambert

Mélisande [électrotrad] = Mouth harp, flute, bangers!

At last, something to bring together the folk heads and the candy ravers. One of the most ambitious projects to come out of Québec in quite some time, Mélisande [électrotrad] have concocted a booty-shaking fusion of Québecois folk music and electronic jams. Sounds like something that might upset the purists, but Mélisande have gone to great lengths to preserve the authenticity of the source material, even traveling to the U.S. Library of Congress to dig up ancient recordings. This program features an interview with Mélisande, discussing their tour and brand new album, les Millésimes.

¡También, vamos a España!

Manx to the Future!

isleofmanspace

Clear skies over the Isle of Man

Resting calmly in the eye of the UK, the Isle of Man hosts a surprising storm of folk and progressive sounds. The Manx language is also experiencing a triumphant rebirth, thanks in part to the weird wonders of social media. Hear Manx music of all stripes in this week’s far-out soundscape:

And here, a (not particularly clear) recording of the last known native speaker of the Manx language, Ned Maddrell:

Xmas tunes that Sizzle from the Caribbean to the Vaticizzle

pope-francis

Pope Francis needs a beat when he’s blessin’ on the street

This year’s Unorthodox Xmas special is a truly unique sonic feast!  For the first hour, we substitute snow and chestnuts for sand and coconuts. Behold a tropical holiday fiesta of classics and obscurities:

And for the second hour, a trip to the hotbed of Holy: Vatican City! It’s not all choirs and crosses, there are forays into Pope-approved hip hop and prog rock along the way. I couldn’t possibly make that up.

Mountain Dwellers of the North Caucasus

dagestan-folk

Strummin’ on the Kumuz

Where the Caspian sea meets the Caucasus mountains lives the Republic of Dagestan.  The most ethnically diverse corner of Russia, Dagestan is a place rarely explored by outsiders and only minimally administered by the national government.  As ethnic Russians make up less than 4% of the population, Dagestan is a mix of dozens of different cultures and languages singing and fighting for respect.

The rocky terrain impedes modernization and helps preserve these traditions, but also provides shelter for guerrilla groups, whose drawn-out battles for independence have haunted the region for decades.  Here we explore the many colours of Dagestani music, incorporating Central Asian and Middle Eastern melodies with a view to the north and the west.  May these myriad rhythms help bring the people together, and make it known to the government that diversity should be celebrated.

lezgins

Lezgians have learned to levitate in the thin mountain air