Electr-O-Pura is the seventh studio album by the American indie rock band Yo La Tengo, released on May 2, 1995 by Matador Records. Electr-O-Pura received very positive reviews from music critics. Steven Mirkin, writing for Entertainment Weekly, commented: "Combining homespun charm, critical sophistication, and a fan's enthusiasm, Yo La Tengo sounds like a well-adjusted Velvet Underground. Electr-O-Pura's songs run the gamut from loopy pop to pensive folk to flat-out weird; their unpretentious honesty brings them together into a musically and emotionally satisfying whole." In 1996, the album was ranked at number 9 in The Village Voice's Pazz & Jop critics' poll for 1995. Similarly, Spin placed the album at number 11 on their list of the "20 Best Albums Of '95".
Continuing their explorations on Silk Road Journeys: When Strangers Meet, Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble go even deeper into cross-cultural studies on this 2005 soundtrack album. Produced for a 10-part series on Japan's NHK television network, the CD's 15 tracks are arranged in three suites, entitled Enchantment, Origins, and New Beginnings, more reflective of inherent musical affinities than of the way the music was used in the program. The musicians tap into the variously overlapping musical styles of lands stretching from China and India to Iran and Turkey, and the arrangements by Zhao Jiping and Zhao Lin include a mix of instruments from around the world, to add greater color and sonic dimensions. The album's exotic and meditative qualities may attract fans of both international and new age music, though there is perhaps little crossover appeal for Ma's classical devotees.
This is a jazz session with the renowned classical cellist Yo-Yo Ma joining the fun. The emphasis is on the music of Cole Porter, which was very familiar ground to Grappelli long before the session took place. Grappelli, guitarist Marc Fosset and bassist Jon Burr go it alone on the quick run through "Just One of Those Things." Pianist Roger Kellaway and drummer Daniel Humair also add solid rhythm support, though they mostly stay out of the solo spotlight.