Listening - Monday, Nov 4th 2019

Qat, Coffee & Qambus: Raw 45s From Yemen

Well, my CD player issue is sorted out for now. I hooked up my DVD player (duh) as a headless player in the short term while I figure it out, but that means I can listen to Qat, Coffee & Qambus which just arrived in the mail today.

I was pretty excited to hear this having just finished an interesting book about Yemen by Tim Mackintosh-Smith this year. It barely touches on the music – and from what I gather music is either outlawed or frowned upon in some areas of Yemen, but there were mentions of percussion ensembles and dances-that-aren’t-called dances sprinkled through the book. I wonder if the opening track on this is an example of that percussive dance/not-dance style. At any rate this is a solid compilation. Chris Menist’s liner notes are helpful but didn’t answer the questions raised in Mackintosh-Smith’s book either – or I’m misunderstanding things, which is more likely.

I haven’t played this tape of The Hub before they were The Hub in a while – I also haven’t digitized it yet so I guess I’m always a little afraid it’ll get eaten for some unknown reason. It’s a good one to come back to though and next time I’ll digitize it! That extended Tim Perkis / John Bischoff / Mark Trayle jam at the end is still the highlight for me but it’s solid early digital skronk all around.