Song of the Day: Requiem (by Altan Urag)

The latest “Song of the Day” comes from a band that many haven’t heard of but should. It was fellow site writer necromoonyeti who first introduced me to their band of folk rock almost three years past now. It was their song “Requiem” that first got Altan Urag onto my music radar.

“Requiem” is a difficult song to categorize. It’s definitely traditional folk music in sound and gives hints of Altan Urag’s folk rock sound. It is also a song that cannot be called a ballad and too melodious to be a dirge despite the title. The video made for this song actually starts off with a young boy asking his grandfather a question. We don’t know what he asks but the song itself gives u s hints as to the answer. An answer that has notions of sorrow and hope, of death and rebirth.

We don’t get to hear the distinctive “throat singing” from the band in this song, but their use of traditional Mongolian folk music instruments like the morin khuur (horse head fiddle) and ikh khuur (grand horse head fiddle) could easily be heard throughout the song and gives the song it’s unique sound.

Altan Urag may not be a house hold name to the general public, but songs like this should give those who have never heard of them an idea why so many people hold them in such high regard.

4 responses to “Song of the Day: Requiem (by Altan Urag)

    • Not even close. It’s the horse head fiddle up close. I thought the same until I saw pictures of the band and their videos and the morin khuur and ikh khuur used shows the stylized horse head topping the fiddle.


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