Tony Cavallario: In my college-radio days, I briefly took over the world-music show. I was into Ali Farka Toure and Baaba Maal way before it caught on in indie-rock circles (a non-accomplishment worth absolutely nothing). But the music that I’m always eager to share, because no one else does, is Sardinian folk music. It’s kind of like throat singing, because the other singers in the vocal quartet are providing octave overtones, following rhythmic patterns that I can’t quite pin down. They modulate from chord to chord with at least one of the singers keeping it real guttural and primitive. All of which gives the melody its elusive quality, humble yet spooky and ethereal. And the Tenores don’t need to echo through a cathedral to sound otherworldly. (Sorry to the monks.) It’s just four cool shepherds walking around singing. Maybe in tall grass. Maybe outside the village bakery. “T’Amo” is a very palatable example of this music, approaching a secular, slightly Philly-street-corner sound, albeit refracted through the ancient.
Video after the jump.