Thursday, November 22, 2007

North Strand Klezmer Band

I've never seen a live klezmer band before. So on Tuesday when the Trinity Jewish Society put North Strand on in Cassidy's as some sort of e-mail getting event/opportunity for everybody to realise that Jewish culture sometimes comes in very intense, North Dublin-based, seven man packages. An appreciable effort, and a worthwhile one.

Downstairs in Cassidy's was empty. This was a clever deception, because upstairs was absolutely jammed and sweaty as fuck. I can't imagine how stubborn and dull someone would have to be to stay downstairs when they heard the klezmer vamp and and the manic dancing kick in. Absolute brilliance.

They played a variety of different Jewish songs with Yiddish names which I have no chance of being able to reproduce accurately, even if I remembered their sounds. They also played some songs with names in English, like Merchant's Arch. And some gypsy songs.

They played vamping, incredibly Eastern European sounding brilliance on incredibly Eastern European sounding instruments, with no hint of irony at all. The place was packed to capacity and pumping. It was the best gig in a while. If you haven't seen them, you have to. Really. Preferably in a very full upstairs bar.

Hit them up on MySpace. "Other/Ska/Other" doesn't even begin to describe it.


Jim Dubh said...

Sounds nuts. Would never have guessed that went on in Cassidy's!

If you have not heard it already, you should give Beruit's first album, Gulag Orkestar a listen. Real Eastern European sound on it, although it lacks the intensity that you must have got at that sesion.

Karl said...

I'm pretty into Beirut, or the first album and EP anyway (haven't given the new one much time yet). Went to see them in Tripod that time... they weren't amazing, to my ears anyway.

Pity, great band like.