Re­view: Pink Mar­tini’s new al­bum is en­ter­tain­ing global trip

Kuwait Times - - WEEKENDER -

Pink Mar­tini brings its pro­gres­sive com­mit­ment to “Je dis oui!” (“I say yes”), an en­ter­tain­ing global jaunt in eight lan­guages and a whirling va­ri­ety of styles. With no airs and graces but plenty of splen­dor, Thomas Laud­erdale’s big band/lit­tle or­ches­tra ex­plores songs from Ar­me­nia to Por­tu­gal, a few orig­i­nals and Amer­i­can stan­dards like “Love for Sale” on its ninth stu­dio al­bum. NPR’s Ari Shapiro helps out on “Ov Sirun Sirun,” said to be most fa­mous folk song from Ar­me­nia and a real tear­jerker about un­re­quited love, while Ru­fus Wainwright sings “Blue Moon” with its now rarely-played in­tro­duc­tory verse which fur­ther deep­ens the melan­choly.

Songs from Turkey, Iran and Le­banon add to the sub­lim­i­nal “can’t we all get along” mes­sage sat­u­rat­ing the al­bum, world mu­sic from the times be­fore it be­came just another mar­ket­ing la­bel and “ex­otic” sounds were not so eas­ily within reach. “Fin­nisma Di” re­vamps a Chopin-quot­ing tune from the band’s first al­bum as a yearn­ing yet hope­ful refugee song in Ara­bic, lyri­cist Iyad Qasem giv­ing voice to the sus­pended des­tinies of so many. Among the orig­i­nals is a trio of songs in French sung by band main­stay China Forbes from “Sou­venir,” a re­cent film star­ring Is­abelle Hup­pert. She plays a singer who once lost to ABBA in the Euro­vi­sion song con­test and is at­tempt­ing a come­back with the sup­port of her muchy­ounger, boxer boyfriend. In other words, one more story where Pink Mar­tini feels right at home.—AP

This cover im­age re­leased by Heinz Records shows ‘Je dis oui!’ by Pink Mar­tini.—AP

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