Various – Songs & Dances From Papua New Guinea – Healing, Feasting & Magical Ritual
Songs and dances of hunting, war, work, totemistic ritual, cannibalism, myth, initiation, courtship, rain-making, funerals, magical healing, shark catching and marathon feasting, recorded in remote coastal and inland villages in five far-flung regions of Papua New Guinea, to the north of Australia. One of the world’s most mysterious countries, whose long, wide rivers are home to hundreds of different Melanesian cultures and languages.?These full-throated songs with their vibrant and often complex accompanimental drumming patterns show the richness and variety of the cultural traditions and beliefs of the communities of Papua New Guinea.
Karkar Island: 1. Garamut Call - 0:30 2. Mukoa Siali - 2:59 3. Kanam Dance - 1:56 Green River (West Sepik Province): 4. Birua (Warrior Song After Killing) - 1:54 5. Healing Songs - 7:18 6. Two Healing Songs: Kua Kua! The Bird Of Paradise Is Singing - 2:16 / Let Us Kill A Pig And Put The Blood On Our Sick Friend’s Wound - 2:02 7. Women's Sago Song - 1:28 8. Healing Song About Lake Kanary - 1:24 9. Healing Song - 1:22 10. Feast Song - 0:23 11. Three Eevil (Children's Healing Songs) - 1:15 Mount Hagen (Western Highlands): 12. Hunting Song Of The Moge & Kopi Clans - 1:27 13. Women's Song Of The Moge & Kopi Clans - 1:15 14. Sing-Sing - 5:08 15. Two Songs Of Love & Courtship: 1. - 1:17 2. - 1:49 16. Bayer River Sanctuary - 1:35 New Ireland- 17. Pur - 1:49 18. Bot (Malanggan Funeral Ceremony) - 4:29 19. Friction-Drum & Song On The Death Of A Chief - 2:09 20. Getting on a Lorry - 1:46 21. Shark-Calling Song - 1:47 22. Two Slit-Drum Improvisations: 1. - 1:15 2. - 0:53 Gazelle Peninsula (East New Britain): 23. Rongari: 1. - 0:53 2. - 1:02 24. Fire Dance 9:21
Recordings, text & photographs by John Thornley
1. AllMusic - John Vallier
Due in great part to its unyielding topographical terrain, Papua New Guinea remained a mystery to the western world for quite some time. Once discovered, explorers were confronted with a land of five million inhabitants who spoke over 700 languages and came from Melanesian, Polynesian, Micronesian, and Papuan backgrounds. On Healing, Feasting and Magical Ritual: Songs and Dance From Papua New Guinea, some of this nation's musical anonymity is cast aside as sounds from five of its regions are presented. Beginning with a coded slit-drum message on "Garamut Call," the CD weaves it way through songs and dances of feasting, healing, death, war, cannibalism, courtship, and more. The range of sounds is vast. "Three Evil," a moribund sounding healing song intended to cause sorrow, leads into a striking bamboo flute performance: "Hunting Song of the Moge and Kopi Clans." Centered around the story of an unlucky hunter, this flute ensemble's breathy and arching melodies are built upon complex clusters of revolving rhythmic motifs. On the island of New Ireland a few villagers play a sacred Launut friction-drum. Intended to be heard only on the solemn occasion of a chief's death, this particular rendition on the squawking instrument is surreptitiously offered to the CD's compiler, John Thornley. And the CD's tracks are not restricted to human sounds alone. Shrieks and snorts from a variety of Papuan fauna -- parrots, falcons, toucans, cockatoos, and wild dingoes -- make you feel like you are actually in the "Bayer River Sanctuary." Yet another stellar release from the British National Sound Archive and Topic Records, Healing, Feasting and Magical Ritual begins to demystify Papua New Guinea's polyphonic harmonies, polyrhythmic drumbeats, and disparate sonic realities.