Huun-Huur-Tu’s latest CD is already number one on the charts of Tuvan throat-singing from the autonomous republic of Tuva, federal subject of Russia. In fairness though, it might also be the only album on the charts of Tuvan throat-singing from the autonomous republic of Tuva, federal subject of Russia. This most recent album from the unique quartet combines inexplicable vocal control with energetic explorations of melody from their traditional cultural instruments. Cast off your Birkenstocks and grab the yoga mat, because Huun-Huur-Tu couldn’t be better hippie music if it was intended to be. Listening to Huun-Huur-Tu create an instrument out of the human throat and blend it seamlessly with the other instruments they play is an unbelievably surreal experience.
Though the group’s repertoire of seven transcendent songs may weigh in on the light side, what this album lacks in length it makes up in quality and originality. It is full of smooth-flowing melodies that can be described with no better adjective than organic. Though this CD is a solid compilation by some very skilled musicians, it will likely never be blaring out of a Honda Civic rolling through residential streets. Though it’s accessible to a larger number of people than many other musicians in the category of “world music,” Huun-Huur-Tu doesn’t once compromise a thousand-or-so years of sonic tradition to sell some CDs to kids wearing tight pants and checkered Vans. Huun-Huur-Tu is a success for providing the disorienting opportunity to contemplate the bizarre sounds emerging from a human throat–and the autonomous republic of Tuva, federal subject of Russia.