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From the Heart of South America - Kollasuyumanta Pacha

Sacambaya

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Album Review

Hailing from Bolivia, Sacambaya (a performing troupe associated with Cochabamba's Ayopayamanta Cultural Center) here makes a run through a series of Andean compositions. However, the more popular forms that one is likely to hear on the average Andean album are missing. Instead, the troupe takes great pains to touch upon some of the lesser-used rhythmic structures, along with a greater reliance on the various flutes (the stringed instruments are a newer introduction to the Quechua). The album opens with a rhythm from Incan ceremonial music, followed by a bit of a troubadour's march in the trote rhythm — this is perhaps the most evocative piece, with elements of both pastoral music and adventure themes. After a bit of mix and match between traditional rhythms and those with some potential Spanish influence, the album turns back to the pure Quechua forms with an Auqui Auqui piece (originally slower than most dances, in order to allow the elders to lead) and a pastoral of sorts for the llama herder. The music is a little harder to grasp than the forms of Quechua and Aymara music that have taken hold in the core of world music over the decades, with more complex rhythms and less straightforward melodies. These pieces need a little time and patience to unfold properly. Once they do, though, they expose a sound not often heard.

From the Heart of South America - Kollasuyumanta Pacha, Sacambaya
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