CD Review. Klezmer Shul, 'Veretski Pass' (Golden Horn)
Unique take on neo-traditional Jewish/klezmer music
Veretski Pass—Cookie Segelstein, violin; Stu Broman, cello; and Josh Horowitz, accordion, piano—delivers a unique take on neo-traditional Jewish/klezmer music. As they describe it, this disc “gives the listener an emotional experience comparable to attending a religious service.”
Source material comes from synagogue (or “shul”) melodies and the music of people among whom Jews lived: Rom, Ukrainian, Hungarian, Moldavian, Czech, Polish, and so on.
There’s room for group melodic and harmonic improvisation and reinterpretation on many of the pieces. The feels range from traditional East European to conservatory to impressionistic jazzy. There are 23 mostly short instrumentals, but these are played primarily without pauses, so the album is heard as four long suites.
Segelstein’s stature as an interpreter of Eastern European violin music is stronger than ever. It’s inspiring to hear a great player’s instrumental voice continue to grow. Brotman’s cello bass lines (with occasional leads) groan along, establishing a rocking groove while simultaneously coming up with cool and interesting melodic and harmonic lines.
This trio is a case study in how a small group can create a lot of energy and music.
Enjoy a window into the world of East European string music reinterpreted by three masters of the styles. And the listener doesn’t realize until the applause at the very end that it’s all live at a concert.
That’s a high level of musical achievement.