CDs: Whaling City Sound
YouTube: Ten Hand Band
Radio: Currently #33/peaked at #15 CMJ World chart. Neal Sapper/Matt Hughes (New World N Jazz Marketing, Promotion and Consulting)
Mixed Media Client since:
WCS 038 – Blizzard Boheme Balval
WCS 053 – le ciel tout nu Balval
Listen: Song Clip
For Immediate Release from
Whaling City Sound
Balval maintaining Chart position on CMJ World chart
“Ten Hand Band” is currently #27
5 weeks on- last week #20 this week #15
Another good week Balval’s ” Ten Hand Band ” on CMJ World chart
#5 most added, debuts #37
Have you had a chance to listen yet?
Here’s what they said about Balval’s previous release, “Blizzard Boheme:”
By Dan McClenaghan / All About Jazz:
“…This is fun, exuberant, sometimes dreamy, sometimes fiery stuff that bends the categories all over the place. Frank Zappa would be proud…”
By CN/ The Sing Out
“…There’s plenty to recommend on this album–the band never sets a foot wrong…excellent potential.”
By Sound Roots
“…when I popped in this modest disc by Balval (their name means “the wind”), I was blown away. Paris-based Balval are at once thoroughly modern and deeply rooted…World music fans, I implore you to buy this stunning album right now, both for your own sake and to encourage this amazing group keep playing their heart-stoppingly great Romani music.”
We Interrupt This Program
Brilliant alt-gypsy quintet Balval alters tour plans
Red-hot post-world music group Balval announced that it has had to reschedule tour plans for the United States and Canada originally slated for this spring. Due to circumstances beyond its control, the acclaimed Parisian band has had to set its sights further into the year for its next trek to North America.
Fans of the band will have to wait to see Balval, but that will only help the anticipation grow. The band feels letdown momentarily, too; they had a ballyhooed jaunt to the States in support of its last recording. “We really are tremendously disappointed,” admits guitarist Daniel Mizrahi. “But we’re looking forward to the time when we are again able to play in front of such appreciative audiences.”
In the meantime, there’s a fantastic new recording to feast on, which, while it doesn’t exactly replace the genuine excitement of Balval live, will most certainly satisfy fans hungry for new material.
Ten Hand Band is an emphatic musical statement of a band finding its footing in a variety of exciting hybrid areas. “Tear It Down” is propulsive rock with heavy guitar and a French accent. A fiddle, swampy creole, and a crude blues guitar sound push the “Balfa Waltz.” “Insomnia” starts on its firm, gypsy foundation but revs up the turbo for a fresh new sound. Same with “Tell Us, Beautiful Girl,” which features a soaring fiddle atop a distorted guitar line and stomping rhythm.
Singer Awena Burgess, vocalist/violinist Rosalie Hartog, guitarist Mizrahi, bassist Benjamin Body, and percussionist Patrick Gigon ably demonstrate how a tangy gypsy influence can transform into vastly contemporary, even alternative sounds. Each musician in the band commands attention, as Balval reaches for and touches the body and the soul. In lieu of literally seeing them, at least for the moment, Ten Hand Band does an amazing job of telling at least part of the Balval story.
Whaling City Sound, the rising jazz and world music label, is proud to have Balval on its esteemed roster of artists. On the stage and on record, they prove they command attention, and they’ll have yours too, once you seize the opportunity.
In Romani, the mother tongue of the Roma and language of gypsies, balval means the wind. The name is certainly not ironic: Balval, while not a band of gypsies per se, will blow you away with its electrifying brand of red-hot Parisian gypsy music. Led by singer and founding member Awena Burgess, Balval fuses gypsy flair with a vast spectrum of western and European styles. Their fusion is best and most recently heard on the new Le Ciel Tout Nu (The Naked Sky), their second album, and a worthy follow-up to their impressive debut, the aptly named Blizzard Boheme (Bohemian Blizzard).
The group was formed in 2005 and has since appeared at various international venues such as the New York Gypsy Festival in 2008 has been invited there again this year to celebrate the release of Le Ciel Tout Nu, on New Bedford’s acclaimed Whaling City Sound label. “Nothing is sacred,” writes a reviewer at worldmusiccentral.org. “Everything is fair game when playing by their rules, which is basically not following any rules at all. The musical freedom is liberating.”
Balval–vocalist Burgess, violinist/vocalist Rosalie Hartog, guitarist Daniel Mizrahi and bassist Benjamin Body, along with percussionist Patrick Gigon–deftly demonstrates how traditional gypsy songs can connect imaginatively with a stunning array of jazz, Latin, and Eastern influences. The new album elevates their vision by combining their unique musical hybrid with original music composed to the lyrics of contemporary Roma poets.
The quintet’s live performances are must-see events, with their distinctive sound matched with their equally dazzling improvisational spark. The result touches the mind, body and spirit, with the ancient transcendence of Eastern Europe, modern foundations of western melody, and the absolutely stunning instrumental dexterity of their gypsy heritage. Few concert dates on your calendar will be as wondrous and exhilarating as a night spent with Balval, Whaling City Sound’s new rising stars. So don your harem pants and brocade blouse, put your dancing shoes on–some serious gusts of musical wind are waiting.