Boomkat Product Review:
**Bespoke 4CD package holding 90 tracks housed in heavy-duty box with 272-page hardback book of essays and annotations by leading ethnomusicologists** The consistently amazing Dust-to-Digital label present the fruits of collector/compiler David Murray's shellac-scouting missions in Southeast Asia. Five years in the making, 'Longing For The Past' surveys 90 kaleidoscopic pieces from 78rpm records recorded between 1905-1966 across Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Burma, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. As to be expected, they're practically all swaddled in a rich patina of fuzz, the inevitable pock-marks of time when you consider many were not properly stored, but the fact they're here and still sounding so bright and otherworldly should be considered a minor miracle. We're effectively bearing witness to another world through the smeary windows of an archaic time machine, offering privileged, rare glimpse of the region's indigenous music and culture before they were ravaged and irrevocably altered by all manner of factors, from war and genocide to the pervasive influence of imperialist cultural policy. The compiler's attention to detail is exemplary, yielding fascinating background notes for all tracks, along with ethnomusicological studies provided in the huge accompanying book beside images taken from postcards and photographs giving vital context and documenting the wonderfully exotic and often obsolete instruments the music was played upon. To call the whole package immersive would be an understatement; this collection is bound to transport listeners to a whole other time and place entirely, serving countless hours of beautifully informed entertainment and abundant historical value. Highly recommended!