“La Langue Sauvage” is a new release procuring Barb’s finest compositions. With Romanian gypsy, french folk, new classical compositions and even some B grade horror and experimental music, this album takes Australia’s foremost hurdy gurdy player to uncharted territories.
Barb Dwyer – La Langue Sauvage
by Roger Holdsworth
Barb Dwyer has now departed these shores (for Canada, I believe), but has left a great legacy of innovative music for the hurdy-gurdy, based on a long study in Australia and Europe.
This collection starts very traditionally with the Romanian ‘Saraiman’ from Roma repertoire and with Barb joined by George Urbaszek on bass, Sophia Chapman on accordion and Jonathan Lewis on violin.
Their music is both sad and exuberant somehow, surrounded by the sampled sounds of a Roma party in Sibiu.
And from there, Barb takes her hurdy-gurdy into stranger and more challenging territory: a traditional French folk rhyme (‘Le Papillon’) becomes almost trance-like in its repeated vocal lines; a Rajisthani-inspired melody brings in Blair Greenberg on percussion and the sampled Nepali voice of Regmi; solo improvisations composed in a German church; and a couple of dream sequences in which surrealism is reflected in lyrics, vocalisation and arrangements.
The CD finishes with a powerful piece for four hurdy-gurdies that is almost ‘classical’ it is repetitive motifs.
The hurdy-gurdy still has an elemental and ‘savage’ sound, sometimes harmonious, but often discordant to our ears.
Barb’s ‘langue sauvage’ complements it well.
This CD constantly pushes boundaries and will take you to strange and wonderful places – that’s why I like it.
Open your ears and enjoy it.