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World Music CD Reviews Europe


By Ernest Barteldes
Published March 24, 2006

Istra Orfej
CD ORF 311

This Croatian singer mixes it up this album, which contains influences from folk music, rock and whatever else inspires him. On "Balun", he invites everyone to dance to the a traditional Istrian folk dance, and praises God for everything the world has to offer on "Za Bolji Svit" (For A Better World). He shares the vocals with Lidija Percan as he pays homage to his neighboring Italians in "La Mula de Parenzo"(The Girl from Parenzo), a traditional Venetian song that receives a fast-paced arrangement that mixes acoustic and electronic sounds. He gives a bossa-nova feel to "Draga Nam Je Istra" (Beloved Is Our Istra), and amuses us on the original "Amerika", a twelve-bar blues tune in which he laments leaving his beloved country for New York "just for rock and roll". Listen to "Ancora Un Litro de Quel Bon", a Venetian drinking song in which a group of friends order "just another liter of that good stuff" before they head back home.