Nowadays, there tends to be a divide between fans of “old” world music (think Ravi Shankar, Graceland) and the bass-heavy beats that move the globally-minded youngsters of today. Balkan Beat Box, perhaps more than any other band today, bridges that gap.
The Israeli trio now based in Brooklyn is inspired by banging reggaeton, old-school mariachi, Balkan brass, and just about everything else under the sun. Those roots shows in their music, which is infused with Middle Eastern scales, dancehall-style chatting, heavy electronic beats and the rich timbres of traditional instruments.
Blue Eyed Black Boy, the band’s latest release on National Geographic World Music, was recorded with Roma musicians in Serbia, and it's the most organic sounding album so far. The record includes this track, “Dancing With The Moon,” which can only be described as gypsy-flavored reggae full of castanets.