Zohar :: One.Three.Seven
[ark21]   review from derek  

The term fusion has become as open-ended as world music itself, but serves as a fitting description of much of what's happening in the global dance scene these days. While many projects are working on fusing diverse styles into new ideas, Zohar worked the other way around on one.three.seven, beginning with an idea that of the mystical teachings of Kabbalah and building atop that foundation.

The brainchild of Erran Baron Cohen, who was inspired on this project some years ago hearing a middle eastern cover of Eric B. and Rakim's "Paid in Full" in the London underground, he linked with Andrew Kremer to devise a continuous stream of sounds that united international harmonies in sacred context. The result is a mutli-faceted album with rich textures and layers. The first release on Mondo Rhythmica, this is a sligh re-hashing of their 1999 independent release on Zohar Records, featuring many of the same tracks with a few updates.

While one.three.seven becomes repetitive in the second half, there are still a ton of powerful grooves within. The title track combines middle eastern strings with rai chanting, as "Ehad" is a throwback to seventies production that keeps the spirit dancing. A heavy element of percussion exists throughout, while their ability to add orchestral sounds and transitory bass breaks rounds out the effort. My personal picks are "Elokainu," with a romping beat intro, and "Head and Bones," opening with a distorted guitar riff that descends throughout in a harmonious backbeat.

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  1. Ehad (pick)
  2. One.Three.Seven
  3. Midnight At The Bazaar
  4. Byzantine (pick)
  5. Elokainu (pick)
  6. Angel
  7. The Merciful One (pick)
  8. Head And Bones (pick)
  9. Harmony
  10. Maroc
  11. Salaam
  12. Sketches Of Egypt