What does the earth sound like? How do the thoughts and feelings of people who lived hundreds of years ago sing? Those people who lived on their land and then lost it. And then came back and lost it again. People who are forced to become refugees in the fifth generation due to the obsessive aggression of a colonizing neighbor.
Like the Jamal’s “Qirim” album sound – epic, boundless, free and dramatic at the same time, deep to the bottom of the sea and high to the top of Allah’s head, academic, as if for philharmonics, and authentic, as world music should be, very earthly and at the same time magical and cosmic.
Before this album, of course, there were various musical projects devoted to Crimean Tatar music, but for the first time, indeed for the first time, it has been elevated to such heights. The first full-length album, the world premiere with the BBC Philharmonic in Liverpool on a huge stage in front of an audience of 15,000, under the baton of the legendary Ukrainian conductor Volodymyr Sirenko, during the millions-audience Eurovision festival, which attracted the attention of all European media. It seems that today Crimea is culturally de-occupied in the minds of all of Europe, today everyone feels that it is a part of the big European family.
Each song of the album represents a separate region of Crimea, and each song is an indisputable and eternal testimony that it was the Crimean Tatars who inhabited the Crimean peninsula from ancient times, created its history, culture, toponyms, lifestyle and mental context. Everything else is a matter of time.
The appearance of “Qirim” is all the more invaluable right now – when battles are being fought for Ukraine every day, when every day the hesitation of international partners and allies regarding certain types of weapons costs the lives of Ukrainian soldiers and civilians in every region of the country. When the detention of Crimean Tatar activists, illegal imprisonments, fabricated cases, abductions, are all possible and impossible ways to destroy memory and force silence. Right now Crimea sounded louder than ever.
From a musical point of view, Qirim is 14 symphonic poems and an overture, in which composer Artem Roschenko created decorations for each of the ancient song diamonds. But the main jewel of this tiara is the phenomenal voice of Jamala, a Crimean Tatar singer, who once again proves that it is possible to reach heights without losing one’s identity, as is customary in big show business, but on the contrary, emphasizing it.
You can talk about this project for a long time, because it combines an infinite number of topics on many levels. But the shortest of them is just listen to the album and #CrimeaisUkraine.
🎵 Listen to the album: https://qirim.jamala.ua/