Monday, 13 March 2017

Anor's long sought-after Taste of Pomegranate from 1987






Surprisingly there is a review online from 2001 for this rarity:

Line-up: 

Grigory "Grig" Pushen - bass 

Simon Mordukhayev - saxophones 

Natalie Nurmukhamedova - vocalizes 

Yury Benjaminov - guitars, sitar & Uzbek national string instruments 

Andrey Pertsev - drums 

B.Tashkhodjayev - Uzbek national bass instruments

A.Yakubov - keyboards

ANOR was formed by the talented composers Grig Pushen and Simon Mordukhayev in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, in the beginning of the 1980s. In the first half of the 1980s the band played only in Tashkent's various clubs. In 1985 Anor was invited to perform at the annual (and very popular in these years) festival of Jazz and Jazz-related music, called "Fergana Jazz". It's called so because it was held in the town of Fergana, which is one of the regional civic centres of Uzbekistan. Anor's performance at the "Fergana Jazz 1985" festival was very successful and the band become a winner of it, while a few of the band members were awarded as the best guitarist, bassist, etc. That happened mainly thanks to the enthusiasm and efforts of the Anor bandleader Grig Pushen who was one of the leading composers of Uzbekistan in the 1980s. Anor disbanded in the beginning of the 1990s, and then Grig has founded his own recording studio, which at the time was the most modern and respectable studio in the republic. Back to Anor, after the band's major success on "Fergana Jazz 1985" the famous Uzbekistani female singer Natalie Nurmukhamedova, whose popularity wasn't limited by the borders of the USSR (let alone the borders of her own republic), joined them. Another musician, who was famous all over the USSR, saxophonist Simon Mordukhayev become the 'staff' Anor member a few years ago. A very talented drummer Andrey Pertsev, one of the Anor's former members, also became a well known musician. It happened in the beginning of the 1990s, when he joined the legendary heavy metal band from Moscow called Black Coffee. During the first half of the 1990s Andrey was also a drummer for a couple of Russia's famous Thrash and Heavy-Metal bands. Thanks to his incredible musicianship, the further musical career of Andrey has been continued in Canada, where he and his family live since 1997. Yuri Bendjaminov is also one of the most well known Uzbekistani musicians. The only Anor LP was pressed by both the biggest (Moscow and Tashkent) factories-divisions of the "Melody" concern. "A Taste of Pomegranate" represents an extremely original and complex, intricate Jazz-Fusion (Progressive Jazz-Rock, to be precise), filled with unique, colourful Uzbek and other Eastern ornaments'and all of the essential progressive ingredients as well. In their messages to me, a lot of my friends in CIS and abroad, who are into a real Prog Fusion and have Anor's "A Taste of Pomegranate" LP, expressed their delight with the music of the band and the musicianship of all of the band members. Frankly, the majority of them said Anor is on a par with most of the famous Titans of the genre.



Unfortunately I cannot share their enthusiasm and for me it was a huge disappointment especially in comparison to the next instalment which will be Sunkar.

From rateyourmusic you can see the demand for this.  The review is ineptly overestimating:

80s smooth jazz crossed with Silk Road romanticism.  At the point where the "ethnic" and the bland intersect, the "avant garde" can briefly be seen.  Seasoned pros of the Soviet scene will find much to enjoy, but newcomers might deem Sato, who follow the same formula and are from the same Republic, more palatable.

As usual discogs has the Russian completely hidden from us (a search for Anor doesn't work), it can be found here in the database.  If you look at the sale price on the right hand side you will easily understand why it was such a disappointment to purchase, but here's track b1, which is 13 minutes long, and in my opinion the highest level of composition achieved:





And I'll throw in track b2 right after, which I found to be totally average (thereby giving the lie to the Rym reviewer):







16 comments:

  1. Enjoy it, and may your curiosities be satisfied...

    http://www109.zippyshare.com/v/aMSwdsU8/file.html

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  2. This just amused me: I see your album choices are now aligning with those of Ezhevika Fields, which means at the moment I have two pomegranate eyes staring at me on my Top Sites page - and symmetrically at that...
    By the way, I'm not sure if it's russian language that's being hidden, but with an Uzbek band, for instance, it might be more to the point to use the word "cyrillic" when referring to the script.

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    1. wow. Of course, it's amusing for you, but a bit bitter for me, since, guess who bought the record and spent a little fortune on it 2 years ago in order to rip it and then make it available to everyone...
      of course, if I minded the free sharing of rips I wouldn't be doing this, so it's the bed I made of course

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    2. thanks for the note Pet, and good point about the use of the term cyrillic, I was just being lazy there.

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  3. Oh, somebody's expressly thanking Lisa at Ezhevika for putting this album online: "Where you find these things is amazing." I thought to put a link to your site in a comment, don't know if they'll accept that. And if you don't like that I can remove the link (or maybe this link here too:) http://ezhevika.blogspot.fi/2017/03/contemporary-music-ensemble-directed-by.html

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    1. now I find it amusing too!
      that's OK, these old LPs need as much popularization as possible as far as I'm concerned...

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    2. Fine! I'd like to mention I posted a comment (after your first reply) that did start with "OK it's not amusing anymore..." but I see why you might not have cared to publish it, and that's fine with me. Keep up the good work...

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    3. lol, I wanted to publish it but let's leave the whole episode as amusing! and thx again

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  4. PS. Forgot to change the .fi into .com in the link...

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  5. Sorry you feel let down by this album (for the price paid) but I found it quite nice overall and really liked it! Thanks for posting and for an amazing blog, my number 1 stop whenever I hit the blogosphere!

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  6. http://progresyvusisrokas.blogspot.ru/2016/05/greg-pushen-contemporary-music-ensemble.html posted in May 2016 and nobody ever cares how much he, you or me paid for the records. We are spreading the vibe because MUSIC IS TO BE HEARD!!!

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    1. Yes, I agree with you totally, I know Aidas well and he's a very generous person (the obscure beasties blogger). Just to set the 'record' straight though, two years ago when I bought Anor, it was still on his wishlist and I wondered whether to share it openly but didn't due to the high cost, so some people do care how much the records cost, those who buy them. Of course if I minded I wouldn't post stuff publicly but instead like most collectors only share privately, like Tom Hayes. Don't forget these expensive records eventually all become available over the years, but someone somewhere has to buy it first.
      Keep up the great music sharing!

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  7. That's true Julian & I'm always grateful to the people who share music plus nowadays myself I'm buying only vinyls I can't find online digitally in order to rip them & share publicly. As for the private sharing - well it's boring to eat alone)) All hidden gems will see the light of new day sooner or later) Thank you for the great albums you put online! take care, Lisa

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  8. thanks and keep up the good work/blog!

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