When the beat of the opening track "Dirge Sirba" opens
up into a funky groove, you know this isn't your grandfather's
klezmer. With wild improvisations that have been compared to Phish,
Boston-based Naftule's Dream has taken modern Jewish music to
a new level.
The group's third CD, this live recording uses the Biblical story
of Job to launch an exploration of the tension between improvisation
and structure. Mixed by ubiquitous whiz Bill Laswell, the tracks
range from the minimalist experimentation of "Back in the
Sewer" to a wild, often dissonant rendition of Fiddler on
the Roof's "To Life," while the tempo changes and playful
instrumentation of "Industrial Bulgar" bring to mind
Raymond Scott's cartoon soundtracks.
The playing is first-rate, and the musicians-who have classical,
rock, and even bluegrass credentials-make other modern Jewish
bands look downright traditional.