Home Read Albums Of The Week: Diamanda Gal​á​s | In Concert

Albums Of The Week: Diamanda Gal​á​s | In Concert

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Diamanda Galás In Concert is not simply a live album. With nothing but a piano and the full expressive range of her extraordinary voice, Diamanda Galás strips away the comforting patina of time, tradition and stylistic convention to expose and express the raw human emotion that is the living heart of a song.

In Concert explores an eclectic range of material; rembetika, soul, ranchera, country and free jazz, and her passionate eviscerations reveal their hidden kinship. Four of the songs — O Prósfigas, La Llorona, Let My People Go and Ánoixe Pétra — are for and by the forsaken, outcast and debased; the other three are hardboiled love songs.

In Concert features select recordings taken from performances at Thalia Hall in Chicago, and Neptune Theatre in Seattle from 2017. The songs are drawn from disparate sources. Galás is of Maniati Greek and Middle-Eastern Greek/Egyptian origin, but she was born near the border of San Diego and Mexico, hearing the corridos, ranchera, and ballades daily, so the album draws deeply from both sources.

Crucial to her performance are song types with ancient roots, primarily the amané, a vocal improvisation of Anatolian Greek origin. Amanés can be defined as a last prayer to the mother by a dying soldier, with the word amané itself possibly deriving from the Greek word mana, mother. Echoes of amanés can be heard in the Adhan, the Islamic call to prayer, but in origin it is a primal lament, expressing grief and loss. The origins of the amané are archaic; its spirit is urgent and timeless.”