Maryam Mursal — The Journey
(RealWorld CAR 2370-2, 1998, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 1999-01-01Maryam Mursal is a singer from Somalia now exiled and living in Denmark. Somali music, like the country itself, is a unique mixture of African and Arabic. On this release, Mursal approaches her culture from a European pop perspective, freely mixing Somali instruments, melodies, and rhythms with contemporary grooves provided by her Danish collaborator Soren Kjaer Jensen and producers Simon Emmerson and Martin Russell of Afro-Celt Sound System. As with the best Afropop, the beats drive the music, ranging from slinky Egyptian shuffle to James-Brown-goes-to-Africa rave-up. Many tunes are punctuated with a horn section, and the Elektra strings feature prominently on several cuts. The recording was done largely at Peter Gabriel's Real World Studios, and Gabriel adds backing vocals on the album, though not in an especially noticeable capacity. This album functions equally well for the fan of cross-cultural dance music or the novice seeking new sounds. It's quite representative of the best the genre has to offer.
Related artist(s): Maryam Mursal
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more