I was in a Hennes and Mauritz store in Passeig de Gracia in Barcelona when I heard a song that really captured my attention. Normally in these kind of highly stylised regimented stores where everything is micromanaged and planned to a ridiculous level of detail, the chances of hearing a decent tune are approximately the same as the Rolling Stones putting out a good new album. So it probably had a bigger impact on me than it normally would. I jotted down some of the lyrics and had tracked down who it was by quicker than you can open google and type a bunch of lyrics. Well ok, not quicker, but you get the picture.

Turns out I was listening to a track called Refugee by Oi Va Voi. These guys specialise in – wait for it – “Jewish music from both the Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions, including both lezmer and Ladino music, and Hungarian folk music.” I’m not making this up, it’s ripped straight from Wikipedia. Probably the thing that’s hardest to believe about it is that it actually sounds dope. They helped launch the career of KT Tunstall, and she’s all over their album Laughter Through Tears, including this pretty haunting piece called Yesterday’s Mistakes. I reckon they’re like a cross between old Massive Attack, Morcheeba and the soundtrack to a Cirque du Soleil production.

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