|Various Artists / Bellylicious|
|Add Date:||2004-03-01|| ||Pull Date:||2004-05-03|| ||Charts:||Reggae/World|
|Week Ending:||9 May||4 Apr||28 Mar||21 Mar||14 Mar||7 Mar|
A compilation of Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Indian flavors of catchy dance music with a bellydance theme, Bellylicious is an ambitious album. Well-known bands such as The Dhol Foundation, Thievery Corporation, The R.E.G. Project, Spiritual Brothers, and Saed Mrad lead the integration of Arab and traditional middle-eastern/Indians melodies, rhythms, and textures into a modern electronic breakbeat. Unfortunately, a few of the songs are so amped up with the driving bass that they nearly end up losing their exotic flavor. Overall catchy with great production values.|
Track 1, Seeking advice…: Starts with plain percussion; then sitar riffs, distorted chanting/wailing, and sax join in for good measure. Strong techno beat. Tempo and tension rise as the track progresses.
**Track 2, Inta Omri: Shakers, followed by drumming on different types of surfaces. Disco-ish beat. Very Middle eastern sound. Nice!
Track 3, Sawah: Traditional middle eastern percussion, drowned out by annoyingly thumpy beat last heard on the dance floors of the 90s.
Track 4, Kariat: Similar to #3.
Track 5, Peace: Raw, almost tribal beat. Tempo reduces with the riffs of a stringed instrument at 1:00, then picks up again at 2:00.
Track 6, Roots beat: Think intro to a James Bond flick. Female vox going “papapa” to dramatic, mysterious music. Cheesy in a cool sort of way. Very heavy percussion.
Track 7, Higher ground: Techno beats, intermittent male wailing in the background.
**Track 9, Reflex: Dripping water and clanking of cymbals. Later, flute and sax join in.
Track 10, Chicky: Middle eastern rhythm with some unimpressive rapping thrown in.
Track 11, Turkish delight: Traditional pipes + drums with campy female vox in English (not to mention moaning and grunting). This one for the strip clubs.
**Track 12, Colors of Panjab: Begins with a beautiful flute refrain plus the tinkering of distant temple bells. Traditional bhangra beats starting at 1:30. Probably the most authentic track on this album (and its not even belly dancing, really).
Track 13, Lagian: More modern sounding bhangra (fused with middle eastern percussion and techno beats). Tame male vox.
**Track 14, Ja vidi: Starts with riffs from some sort of Persian stringed instrument. Great trance/techno music.
Track 15, Indra: Traditional Indian female vox plus percussion starting at 2:00.