Magazine article New Internationalist

Sprinting Gazelle

Magazine article New Internationalist

Sprinting Gazelle

Article excerpt

Music

Sprinting Gazelle

by Reem Kelani (Fuse CFCD048 CD)

Born in Manchester, raised in Kuwait and, musically, a citizen of the world, Reem Kelani is a singer who brings a new sensibility and drama to the sounds of her ancestral Palestine. Sprinting Gazelle is the long-awaited album from a musician who, often a guest on other peoples' jazzbased projects, is overdue decent media exposure. The ten songs on Sprinting Gazelle are a mixture of traditional Palestinian songs - many gathered from refugee camps - and Kelani's own arrangements for lyrics and protest songs by such prominent writers as Mahmoud Dawrish and Salma Khadra Jayyusi. Once past some of the titles - 'The Cameleer Tormented My Heart' does have a certain pungency about it - you're in the heart of something remarkable.

Buoyed up by a small band led by piano and clarinet duo Zoe and ldris Rahman, Kelani's power over both her traditional, often acapella, songs and personal settings is emotive. …

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