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Le pas du chat noir

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Album Review

Oud player Brahem has established his own little niche with the instrument; his music, strongly Arab-inflected, has the spare, chamber feel that makes it a perfect fit in the ECM catalog. He's a contemplative player, and this melding with piano and accordion suits his style perfectly, as notes and ideas draw out marvelously. The interplay between musicians is as delicate as lace — thoughtful, with everyone listening as much as playing. It's a record with many moments of great beauty, like the exquisite piano on "C'est Ailleurs" or the filigree touches between accordion and piano that decorate and nudge along many of the tracks. Brahem is a superb, if reserved, musician, as are his colleagues: Francois Couturier on piano and Jean-Louis Matinier on accordion. Together they trace something exquisite, an experience for the eras and the heart.

Customer Reviews

Truly exquisite album

This album with its simple yet powerful instrumentation (piano, oud, accordeon) evokes the moods created by Satie and his Gymnopédie series thus taking us to a landscape of romantic proportions. However, we are also invited to what sounds like Buenos Aires in the 1930s to the sweet, evocative tone of the accordeon/bandoneon. Each composition is an exercise in subtlety and determination, trying to make a point but not forcibly so. It is an invitation to a landscape of splendor with multiple little coves, one representing the modern, one the classic, one the arabic, and a great lake with a view of it all. Highly recommended.

Exquisite, nuanced and engaging

A subtle, improvisational dance of oud, piano and accordion, Brahem composes melancholy, sensitive street music—given that the street exists at the borderless intersection of Paris, Buenos Aires, and Tunis.

great, great album

This album is exotic and very enjoyable. I recommend this to anyone who loves arab music, this album gives each instument due reverance and gives the listener the opportunity to delve into the sounds of each. This album is relaxing and creative, I love it!


Born: October 20, 1957

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The role of the Arabic, lute-like, stringed instrument, the oud, has been revolutionized through the playing of Anouar Brahem. While used in the past to accompany vocalists, the oud is used by Brahem as an imaginative solo instrument. In 1988, Tunisian newspaper Tunis-Hebdo wrote, "If we had to elect the musician of the '80s, we would have, without the least hesitation, chosen Anouar Brahem." Brahem has composed numerous pieces for such films and musical theater productions such as Sabots en Or,...
Full Bio
Le pas du chat noir, Anouar Brahem
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Customer Ratings