Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

Consumer Guide:
  User's Guide
  Grades 1990-
  Grades 1969-89
  Expert Witness
  Is It Still Good to Ya?
  Going Into the City
  Consumer Guide: 90s
  Grown Up All Wrong
  Consumer Guide: 80s
  Consumer Guide: 70s
  Any Old Way You Choose It
  Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough
Xgau Sez
  CG Columns
  Rock&Roll& [new]
  Rock&Roll& [old]
  Music Essays
  Music Reviews
  Book Reviews
  NAJP Blog
  Rolling Stone
  Video Reviews
  Pazz & Jop
Web Site:
  Site Map
  What's New?
Carola Dibbell:
  Carola's Website
CG Search:
Google Search:


  • European Klezmer Music [Smithsonian/Folkways, 2000] A-

Consumer Guide Reviews:

European Klezmer Music [Smithsonian/Folkways, 2000]
The idea of klezmer as goodtime music makes every bit as much sense as the idea of polka as goodtime music. Obviously that's the main thing both are supposed to be. Only goodtime musics happen to be a passion of mine, and there are plenty that do the deed better. So the klezmer that moves me generally has spiritual ambitions. With Klezmatics violinist Alicia Svigals relegated to second fiddle by leader Steven Greenman, this American ensemble performs original-instrumentation suites designed for rich people's weddings a century ago. Never a repertoire that took celebration to unseemly extremes, by now it partakes of a classical civility that packs just the charm to soothe a plebe with no passion for civility. A-