In their attempts to make a truly universal album, the Kronos Quartet uses works from the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, and Eastern Europe. The title of the album refers to the land that undergoes flooding and then recovers to be more fertile than ever. Using that philosophy the Kronos Quartet has used musicians from parts of the world in conflict believing that this conflict will give birth to inventive music.
Yes, it is ambitious of them, but they do a fine job. The pieces are heavily influenced by traditional music from these nations, but reworked by young composers from Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Serbia, and Palestine. The sources used have translated into music that is busting with emotion. Anger, sorrow, and hope are to be found in all the songs. It is an accurate reflection of the experience of being human. The music has a strong pulse as it is youthful and vital.