Music of The Kyrgyz People of Central Asia
Various Artists (Frequency Glide Enterprises FGE 0005)
The Voice of Kyrgyzstan
Salamat Sadikova (Frequency Glide Enterprises FGE 0004)
These two CDs of field and studio recordings...are some of the only albums of music from Kyrgyzstan available and theyre total gems.... a first-class, Lomax-worthy job ....The musical tradition reflects the countrys geographical position... Its earthy and humble like all mountain music from Kentucky to the Andes...The singing is simple and natural...
Salamat Sadikova is a beautiful woman in her 40s whos absorbed the countrys song tradition, overcoming social prejudice...Mostly she accompanies herself on the komuz...Sadikovas lullaby voice and lilting komuz [are] divine.
--Reviewed by Ben Sisario, New York Press, December 2001, Volume 14, Issue 49
...One American producer has compared her [Salamat Sadikova] with the great fado singer Amalia Rodrigues and Bessie Smith, but the obvious comparison for me is early Joan Baez. She [Sadikova] has that purity of voice, simplistic approach to the material and the Kyrgyz penchant for holding notes...most tracks are solo, with Sadikova accompanying herself very effectively on the small pear-shaped komuz lute...
Shüüdüngüts Road is a very varied and satisfying introduction to traditional Kyrgyz music. Some good singing is more than balanced by a large number of instrumental solos that not only include those lutes [komuz], fiddle [kyl kiak] and flute, but also two types of idiophone--the temir komuz (Jew's harp) and the wooden jigatch--and those typically rolling rhythms of the grasslands.
--Ken Hunt, Folk Roots Magazine, Jan/Feb 2002, nos. 223/224
The breadth and depth of this disc [Shüüdüngüts Road] opens up a unique musical culture...The star instrument is the komuz, a tiny lute...which is treated with multi-voiced and multiple rhythms reminiscent of flamenco gone wild...Instrumental music is the emphasis, with some singing, and nearly every artist present is convincingly authentic...The sounds are well captured: one only hopes that the Frequency Gliders will be able to continue digging into this Central Asian land. Their website is a must-visit: www.kyrgyzmusic.com
--Allan Evans, Rhythm, Feb/March 2002
Salamat Sadikova has become the country's most important diva...a very expressive voice...The overall effect of her performance is one of delicate beauty rendered in a setting of deceptive simplicity.
Shüüdüngüts Road starts off with a member of the Kyrgyz national folk ensemble Kambarkan singng an elegy to Attila the Hun...The komuz players on this compilation are surprisingly forceful and even virtuosic...The notes are very enlightening with regard to the country's music and culture.
--Paul E. Comeau, Dirty Linen, April/May 2002, # 99
Shüüdüngüts Road is an uncommon success of a compilation, amply showing how the Kyrgyz people approach the reclaiming of their past...a virtuosic treat...
--RD, Sing Out! Vol. 46 #1, Spring 2002
Texas-based world & folk music host Judy Gennett posted the following reviews on the Net:
Shüüdüngüt's Road opens with Nurak Abdïrakhmanov on rich vocals and almost punky strumming, and this title track sets the pace for the CD. There are 31 short selections on the album, the instrumentals often stark, sometimes intricate... There is a rough bright simplicity to all the tracks ... makes the album both a fun and aesthetic item to listen to, also it is very easy on western ears.
The Voice Of Kyrgyzstan contains 19 traditional and composed folk songs by "the favorite traditional singer of the Kyrgyz people." ...There are a variety of influences and parallel evolutions on the album, and most of the lyrics are lovely to read....
Her voice is strong, rich and sensitive and relates the material well.
WAER-FM `World Song Shop' Host, Joe Cleveland, posted his `Best of
2001' list on the Net,
Salamat Sadikova. The Voice of Kyrgyzstan. I was immediately captivated by the strength and clarity of Sadikovas voice, accompanied only by her playing of the komuz (a 3-string fretted lute). (Shes accompanied by a folk ensemble on two of the 19 tracks.) The komuz is a fretless, 3-stringed lute. Together with a great collection of work from Kyrgyz artists called Shüüdüngüts Road, this release is trying to keep the traditional music of Kyrgyzstan alive in the face of contemporary youth who are being swept up by western pop music.
On March 25, `04, the PBS program `Frontline offered a documentary feature on Kyrgyzstan entitled `The Kidnapped Bride. The `Frontline website features Salamat Sadikova singing `Parizat.