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Back in 1986, Stephan Remmler of the cult German new wave band Trio released his iconic ‘Schlager’ “Alles hat ein Ende (nur die Wurst hat zwei)” (everything has an end, but the sausage has two), which basically boils down to saying that everything must come to an end. The phrase and song, now staples of German pop culture, have since taken on a life of their own, which brings us to a certain Joe Fleisch aka Jossi Reich, frontman and controversial [...]

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Joe Fleisch: Vocals / Yiddish
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Joe Fleisch X Ori Toledano – "Als Ding hot a Soff, nur baym Wursht senen zway"
Petite Meller – "Icebear (Waysser Behr)" feat. Joe Fleisch
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Everything Has an End, But the 'Wursht' Has Two

Video Premiere: Joe Fleisch Teams Up With Ori Toledano & Guy Bolandi To Turn Stefan Remmler's '80s Hit Into A Yiddish Chart-Breaker
Greedy

Ever heard of Stephan Remmler and his band Trio? Maybe not. However, you may have crossed paths with his German new wave hit “Da Da Da”, released at the ultra-coolish, icy beginnings of the '80s; a monotonous, [...]

Ever heard of Stephan Remmler and his band Trio? Maybe not. However, you may have crossed paths with his German new wave hit “Da Da Da”, released at the ultra-coolish, icy beginnings of the '80s; a monotonous, semi-callous, numb, yet cynically funny anti-love song with that now iconic, recurring line, quasi spoken by a deep and seemingly indifferent male voice in the same repetitive groove as the Da Da Da bass: “Ich lieb Dich nicht, Du liebst mich nicht” (I don’t love you, you don’t love me). The strength, authenticity and honesty of this track propelled it to worldwide recognition, as an English version was in high demand.

One moment later in history, with the '80s in their finishing round, Michael Jackson, Madonna and Prince were very much alive and kicking, new wave and punk were past their peak, while former B-movie actor Ronny Reagan was in full swing, poised to crush Gorbachev’s Soviet Empire with his “Star Wars”-ish arms race; it was around that time in the year 1987 that Stephan Remmler’s band Trio released “Alles hat ein Ende (nur die Wurst hat zwei)” (Everything has an end, but the sausage has two), a comical and once again deeply cynical ‘Schlager’, which basically boils down to the grim insight that almost every relationship must come to an end, save for the sausage, which literally has two ends. The track to this day remains a hit, on the national level at least. It may have overdosed on that particular kind of humoresque German primitivism, that is less understood elsewhere, but the phrase and song, now staples of German pop culture, have since taken on a life of their own.

Which, almost 30 years later, brings us to a certain Joe Fleisch (pronounced ‘flysh', meaning meat or flesh in German) aka Jossi Reich, frontman and controversial crooner of the notorious Jewish Monkeys. 

Immodestly, Joe Fleisch, the self-proclaimed “neo-Yiddish singer”, claims his singing in the old language “is how Yiddish Pop would have sounded, had Hitler never been born”. A son of Jewish-Polish Holocaust survivors, who after the war found a new home in Germany of all places and who then emigrated to Israel in the late 90s, Joe had always been obsessed with an aspiration to transform the German hits of his youth into Yiddish tunes. Hence, the German sausage, alias “Wurst”, turned into the Yiddish “Wursht”. It just so happened, that Joe approached one of his closest buddies, the video clip director Guy J. Bolandi, who put him in touch with composer/producer Ori Toledano, both acclaimed artists on the Tel Aviv scene.

The latter outfitted Joe Fleisch’s tune with a contemporary, electro-oriental club sound, while Guy J. Bolandi, one of Israel’s most sought after commercial directors for all kinds of tasteless and less tasteless consumer products, always trigger-happy when it comes to doing something provocative, set up a dark, nightly forest scenery and filled it with a bunch of mind-bogglingly erotic female models, who in turn, having just escaped their teens, symbolize that lurking temptation facing millions of poor, horny, heterosexual men on a daily basis, once they have decided to stay true to their chosen one for the rest of their lives.

In order to make the depth of his Yiddish lyrics more comprehensible, Joe urged Bolandi to add some karaoke flair to his “Wursht”. This inspired Bolandi to not only body-paint his actresses with the English translation to Fleisch’s lyrics, but to even take things one step further and integrate a typographic visualization into this stunning lyrical metamorphosis from German to Yiddish. Bolandi combined visual elements usually found in works by contemporary graphic design artists with strong references to the works of Robert Brownjohn, one of the pioneering title-sequence-designers of his time (i.e. James Bond, “Goldfinger”). 

The result is an innovative pop music video, likely to become the very first international Yiddish chart-breaker of the past seven or more centuries (ever since Yiddish came into being, sometime in the dark, German, medieval ages). Yeah!

In closing we say, cursed be the one, who almost exterminated this language. His body may have been burned to ashes after he committed suicide, but his genocidal legacy lives on, be it in the killing fields of Cambodia, in former Yugoslavia, Ruanda, Darfur, Syria, etc. But this shall not be our concern. Instead, we care about fashion, love and ecstasy. So have no fear. Even though the end is near, Joe Fleisch’s “Wursht”, from the hands of Ori Toledano and Guy J. Bolandi, will be sure to console us and keep us afloat, as Global Warming and unfortunate wars threaten to melt and burn us very soon; to ashes. Enjoy!

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Waysser Behr

Joe Fleisch And Petite Meller Give Grauzone's "Eisbaer" A Neo-Yiddish, Europop Makeover
Greedy

With temperatures in the Eastern and parts of the Western Hemisphere leaning towards zero these days, who wouldn't want to be a polar bear?!

Just the time for us to return to the vaults and dig up this frosty little [...]

With temperatures in the Eastern and parts of the Western Hemisphere leaning towards zero these days, who wouldn't want to be a polar bear?!

Just the time for us to return to the vaults and dig up this frosty little gem for you.

Let us fill in the blanks: Back in 2014, the enigmatic artist still known as Joe Fleisch (front-runner of the Jewish Monkeys under his real name Jossi Reich) teamed up with budding French pop arrival Petite Meller, an enticing singer/songstress in her own right, to give Swiss 'German New Wave' outfit Grauzone's iconic song "Eisbaer" (polar bear) a dreamy, neo-Yiddish, Europop makeover, alias "Icebear" or "Waysser Behr" (white bear), co-produced with the JewRhythmics in yes, you heard right, Yiddish.

Petite Meller's husband, the renowned director Asaf T. Mann, then proceeded to stage the two artists in a winter wonderland, equally beautiful as theatrically absurd, and perfectly in line with the song itself.

What's more, Grauzone's former drummer was so excited to hear this revamped version of his band's cult song, he sent Petite Meller a short note via Facebook Messenger in 2015 reading:

"Wow, this is the best Eisbaer version I ever heard...I was the former drummer from Grauzone (1979-1981). Thank you & kind regards from Switzerland, Marco"

We're guessing, you may want to see and hear for yourself. We thought so. Well, here you go:

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Oy, Jew Are Not Alone!

Michael Croland Takes A Closer Look At Yiddish Culture & Punk Music
Greedy

As our Jewish Monkeys continue their pursuit of fame across Germany, performing live in Hanover tonight and in Hamburg tomorrow (check our Shows page here), we decided to reference a recent article by Michael [...]

As our Jewish Monkeys continue their pursuit of fame across Germany, performing live in Hanover tonight and in Hamburg tomorrow (check our Shows page here), we decided to reference a recent article by Michael Croland for young Jewish online magazine Jewcy, fittingly entitled "Mosh Your Tuches Off!". The pop culturally highly relevant piece embarks on a short exploration of current Yiddish punk performers or punk bands incorporating Yiddish elements, "Oy" or "Oi" being the most obvious common ground between the two. The piece names a handful of bands keeping the Yiddish punk spirit very much alive and is but an excerpt from Croland's book "Oy, Oy, Oy, Gevalt!", published in April 2016:

"Step inside a fascinating world of Jews who relate to their Jewishness through the vehicle of punk—from prominent figures in the history of punk to musicians who proudly put their Jewish identity front and center. Many key figures in punk’s history—including members of the Ramones, the Dictators, the Clash, Bad Religion, and NOFX—were Jews."

That being said and without yet having read it in its entirety, we believe this work to be of essential nature. After all, it also represents a large part of the Jewish Monkeys' artistic universe and acoustic heritage.

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Afro Golden Line

Amir Bresler To Drop A Hot New 2-Track 7" On Raw Tapes

Tel Aviv-/Berlin-based tastemakers Raw Tapes return with a forthcoming digital/seven-inch vinyl release by Israeli drummer Amir Bresler, one of the most sought after percussionists on the block. Bresler, who was [...]

Tel Aviv-/Berlin-based tastemakers Raw Tapes return with a forthcoming digital/seven-inch vinyl release by Israeli drummer Amir Bresler, one of the most sought after percussionists on the block. Bresler, who was first exposed to the wonders of jazz music at age 15, today performs with some of the best jazz musicians in Israel as well as on prominent international stages around the globe. 

Some time ago, Bresler was approached by Meinl cymbals and asked to contribute four tracks to their drummers videos series. Bresler turned to his friend Yuval Havkin aka Rejoicer to help with the production side of things and was subsequently joined by some of his best friends and fellow musicians for the recording session. A few months later, he flew to Germany to record drums and film the new tracks at Meinl. Loving the results, he then decided to make them an official release, choosing two of the tracks to be made available to the public. 

The release's title track "Afro Golden Line" is a '70s African-high-life-inspired, odd-meter afrobeat track, featuring Sefi Zisling on trumpet and Uzi Ramirez on guitar, while "Fish" on the B-side (which is not yet available to be streamed) is a rework of an old L.B.T. track (originally featuring vocals by Büttering Trio's KerenDun) with additional composition by Beno & Nomok. In any case, we are more than excited to get our hands on this beauty and can't wait to hear more! Tune-in...

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Tour Be Or Not Tour Be?

BREAKING: The Jewish Monkeys Kick Off A New String Of Live Shows In Switzerland & Germany
Greedy

The infamous Jewish Monkeys have arrived in Germany, again! Well actually they have touched ground in Switzerland, where tonight they kick off a string of eight live shows, to present their brand new longplayer "[...]

The infamous Jewish Monkeys have arrived in Germany, again! Well actually they have touched ground in Switzerland, where tonight they kick off a string of eight live shows, to present their brand new longplayer "High Words" and shake some Teutonic limbs. "High Words"  is now available to stream and download via Bandcamp, right over here, and comprises 10 newish tracks, including the recently released "Pupik", a tale of love in the age of social media. This time around the band will take to the stage in Flawil (CH), Munich, Dresden, Frankfurt, Karslruhe, Hannover, Hamburg and Düsseldorf. You can find a list of all their upcoming shows here. Don't sleep!

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Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra

Berlin's Ensemble Extraordinaire Shares 11-Minute Track Off Their Forthcoming LP
 

Established back in 2006, the 20-something-piece Berlin-based Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra (AMEO) is definitely a musical force to be reckoned with. Unlike your average large ensemble, AMEO has created a whole [...]

Established back in 2006, the 20-something-piece Berlin-based Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra (AMEO) is definitely a musical force to be reckoned with. Unlike your average large ensemble, AMEO has created a whole new and genre-bending musical language that quite literally "dwarfs anything heretofore experienced" (Neue Zürcher Zeitung). With a penchant for experimentation this group of self-organized,  like-minded and in-demand musicians, hailing from various countries and just as diverse musical backgrounds, already has three acclaimed albums to its name and a reputation for wildly fun and highly combustible live shows.

Adding to their bold and multicoloured supersonic repertoire will be their forthcoming fourth album "Vula", finally set to be released on July 7th via the Notwist-affiliated imprint Alien Transistor on CD and 2LP, after what turned out to be quite a long and winding almost five-year process: "It has its own distinct sound and features some of our most heavily played material over the last years. In comparison to our last two albums, there are more harmonic and melodic elements to it, but also a frenzied and urgent energy that keeps pushing throughout this one-hour ride", says the group. 

Earlier this week, our fellow tastemakers from XLR8R premiered the track "J Schleia"*, gifting us a sensational first taste of what's to come: The 11-minute track kicks off with an upbeat overture of woodwind-driven flirtation, taking on a more ethereal form as time keeps ticking and strings join in the springtime flourish, then shifting gears yet again as a smoothly operating saxophone explores afrobeat-inspired terrain before regrouping and shining another light on the many musical roads just travelled. And that's only up to about the 5-minute mark. That being said, we believe you need to hear this track with you very own ears. Download it here or listen in the player above. 'nuff said.

*This would in no way be referencing the versatile Johannes Schleiermacher of the wonderful Onom Agemo & The Disco Jumpers now would it?

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Safar

Music from Afghanistan

Afghanistan suffered immensely under the Taliban regime and subsequent insurgencies, which took their toll on the country's rich cultural diversity and musical traditions. Music was forbidden under Taliban rule, but [...]

Afghanistan suffered immensely under the Taliban regime and subsequent insurgencies, which took their toll on the country's rich cultural diversity and musical traditions. Music was forbidden under Taliban rule, but survived at the hands of master musicians, who continue to pass along their invaluable knowledge to younger generations.

One such project is "Safar" (meaning journey) that marks a continued musical exchange between the University of Music FRANZ LISZT Weimar and the Afghanistan Music Research Centre to support Afghan musicians in their efforts to keep their heritage alive.

Below you can watch a 75-minute live concert by the Safar ensemble recorded back in 2015, consisting of renowned Turkish ney flautist Kudsi Ergüner, masters and students of the Afghanistan International Institute of Music (Kabul) as well as students from the Musikgymnasium Schloss Belvedere (Weimar) and three German jazz musicians:

Kudsi Erguner - Ney
Ustad Khial Modh Saqizada - Rubab
Ustad Fraidoon Miazada - Tabla
Ustad Abdul Latif Sharifi - Dhol
Ustad Modh Murad Sarkhosh - Ghichak
Ustad Ahmad Farid Shefta - Clarinet

Christian Kögel - Guitar
Oliver Potratz - Bass (+ Arrangements)
Jan Burkamp - Drums

Via Undomondo

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Underwater Love

VIDEO: The Jewish Monkeys Premiere Loredana Antonelli's Superbly Animated & Choreographed New Music Video to "Pupik"
Greedy

Today marks the official release day of "High Words", album number two by the crowd-pleasing Jewish Monkeys and well, what more can we say than: we are such proud parents!

Never ones to shy away from giving, this [...]

Today marks the official release day of "High Words", album number two by the crowd-pleasing Jewish Monkeys and well, what more can we say than: we are such proud parents!

Never ones to shy away from giving, this band of middle-aged crooners, psychoanalysts and self-proclaimed womanizers picked this day to air the brand new music video to their album track "Pupik". The clip tells a tale of love in the time of social networks, beautifully brought to life by Naples-based multimedia artist Loredana Antonelli and touchingly narrated by yours truly. The video was premiered earlier today via Jazzthing and is now available for public viewing on JewTube or below. 

As for the group's sophomore album, bearing ten newish bangers and even more unbearable wisdom, you may want to ask your local record dealer or stick to Bandcamp/iTunes. From the whole family here at Greedy, we wish you a heartfelt 'gut shabbes' and sincerely hope you enjoy these high words!

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High Words, The Remix

Yuriy Gurzhy & Uros 'DJ UCE' Petkovic Take On The Jewish Monkeys
Greedy
 

Hold onto your seats everyone as the Jewish Monkeys are about to officially drop album number two tomorrow! That's right, "High Words" is just around the bend and you can already stream/download the masterpiece in [...]

Hold onto your seats everyone as the Jewish Monkeys are about to officially drop album number two tomorrow! That's right, "High Words" is just around the bend and you can already stream/download the masterpiece in full via Bandcamp. Yes, word on the streets rings true as the mischievous bunch is back with a Yiddish vengeance that is very much contagious.

Among the latest mishpoche to have caught the proverbial Fever is Ukrainian-born/Berlin-based all-rounder* Yuriy Gurzhy, known to make a living as a prolific musician, DJ, producer and radio broadcaster, who also delivered a wicked set at the Jewish Monkeys' Berlin show last March. Most recently Yuriy recorded and performed with Daniel Kahn and Marina Frenk as The Disorientalists in his latest production "Who Was Essad Bey?".

Which brings us to DJ UCE, alias Uros Petkovic, a Serbian multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer equally based in Berlin, with an eclectic musical repertoire as well as a claim to fame on the Balkan and E-Swing music scene with projects including ShazaLaKazoo, the BalkanBeats Soundsystem and Jazzotron.

Both Yuriy and UCE have now taken on the title track of the Jewish Monkeys' forthcoming album and added a little spice of their own, best described by Yuriy himself: "In October 2016 I spent an unforgettable week in Tel Aviv. Daily swims, delicious food, visiting old friends, meeting new friends, buying vintage records, discovering new music, speaking English and Russian... When I first heard the Jewish Monkeys' new record I was instantly reminded of these amazing times. And so it was a true honour and a lot of fun for us to be able to remix the title track. Right off the bat, we knew what we wanted to do with 'High Words'. There was no doubt about it. Uce programmed the beat and I brought my ancient Casiotone MT-100 as well as my guitar to the studio that same day... The original is still easily recognisable in our work. We didn't want to move too far away because we actually liked it the way it was, but we did try to contribute another dimension."

We just love that added bounce. How about you? Have a listen in the player above or head over to Yuriy's SoundCloud page.

*Alongside German-Jewish writer Wladimir Kaminir Yuriy Gurzhy established the now legendary "Russendisko" club events, hosted the "Russendisko Klub" radio show on Berlin's Radio MultiKulti (2000-2006), released his 2006 "Shtetl Superstars" compilation of funky Jewish sounds from around the world and followed that up with his 2010 "Revolution Disco" release of modern revolutionary anthems. Yuriy also released three albums with his band RotFront, co-founded the Shtetl Superstars and collaborated with the likes of Shantel, Alec Kopyt, Amsterdam Klezmer Band, 17 Hippies, Perkalaba, Zhadan & Sobaki, MaMa Diaspora, Russkaja and many more. In 2016 he launched a new monthly event series in Berlin entitles "Born in UA", dedicated to Ukrainian music in all its variety and released his "Borsh Division - Duture Sound of Ukraine" compilation via Trikont.

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Monkeying Around

Just Ahead Of Album #2 The Jewish Monkeys Get Interviewed by the Jerusalem Post
Greedy

With only a week to go before their highly anticipated sophomore album's official release, the Jewish Monkeys are revving up the promo engine or as The Jerusalem Post called it, Monkeying Around. In a recent [...]

With only a week to go before their highly anticipated sophomore album's official release, the Jewish Monkeys are revving up the promo engine or as The Jerusalem Post called it, Monkeying Around. In a recent interview with Ariel Dominique Hendelman of the leading Israeli English newspaper, Ran Bagno (accordion) and Gael Zaidner (vocals) shared their thoughts on the band, talked about a momentous performance in front of Syrian refugees and hinted at the fact that there already is a third album in the making.

"As a band, we started off with a more Balkan/Klezmer sound. Now it became more high energy, more exciting, more rock, more punk. It’s more of a blend of all of the places we are coming from. The band is a fusion of our stories; an Israeli salad", says Ran Bagno at one point. "I would like to emphasize that our sound is very Middle Eastern", Gael Zaidner points out.  

Asked why it is so important to laugh at taboos, Bagno answers: "I think it’s the only way to deal with them. We can’t preach about things. If you speak about something with humour, it’s much easier to contain it in my opinion. We are a funny band. We have three singers in the front who are all very strong characters. It’s powerful. The audience is dancing and responding. When we see that, we know that something moved them. Some of our songs have very funny lyrics and we see the audience’s reaction to that. We see that they got the point."

Read the full interview here and give the Jewish Monkeys' second album "High Words" a listen while you're at it. Gut Shabbes!

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ZMEI3

On A Musical Trip Through Transylvania

"Rough Romanian Soul" is the title to their debut album and that is exactly what the Berlin-based quartet Zmei3 formed around two Romanian immigrants delivers. Classically trained vocalist Paula Turcas and band [...]

"Rough Romanian Soul" is the title to their debut album and that is exactly what the Berlin-based quartet Zmei3 formed around two Romanian immigrants delivers. Classically trained vocalist Paula Turcas and band leader Mihai Victor Iliescu on guitar are joined by master vibraphonist Oli Bott and the full sound of double bass player Arnulf Ballhorn as the group conjures up a powerful blend of urban music inspired by its rural Romanian heritage. Recorded live and without overdubs in Transylvania by Grammy® award-winner Ian Brennan (whom you may remember from the Zomba Prison Project), their "beautiful and heartfelt music rises from the harsh realities and struggles of a post-Communist rule", both primal and at times haunting. 

"Eastern Europe in general has been neglected by the rest of the world in terms of interest and exploration of music and culture. It has literally and deliberately been treated as a bloc. There is a great ignorance amongst many as to what Eastern Europe even is after World War II, so to have vibrant and modern music from Romania is a very valuable thing." (Ian Brennan)

Below you can watch the 30-minute documentary by German journalist Roman Rhode, which follows the group on their journey 'home' through breathtaking Transylvanian landscapes, rich in hue and heritage. 

"Rough Romanian Soul" will be released on April 22nd via San Francisco imprint Six Degrees Records.

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Song From The Forest

The Story Of Louis Sarno: Preserving The Musical Traditions Of The Bayaka

Sad news reached us last week, as an obituary page in the New York Times informed us of Louis Sarno's passing. Aged 62, the New Jersey-born Sarno had devoted himself to studying and most importantly preserving the [...]

Sad news reached us last week, as an obituary page in the New York Times informed us of Louis Sarno's passing. Aged 62, the New Jersey-born Sarno had devoted himself to studying and most importantly preserving the music of the Bayaka, a pygmy tribe in the Central African Republic. Sarno spent nearly half of his life with the tribe, fully immersing himself in their culture, their language and most notably their music, which is what drew him there in the first place. He first heard the Bayaka's "mesmerizing melodies" on the radio, while studying in Amsterdam in the early 1980s and almost instantly set out to find out more about them. His journey finally led him to the village of Yandoumbe in the Dzanga-Sangha Forest Reserve, where he found the music that had first spellbound him and pressed record.

"I was drawn to the heart of Africa by a song," Mr. Sarno later recalled. "I boarded a plane that would take me into the equatorial heart of a continent where I did not know a soul, on a quest for a music that might have been nothing more than a state of my imagination." (NY Times)

Released in 2013 the German documentary "Song from the Forest" by Michael Obert visits Sarno in his forest home and accompanies him on a trip to New York City with his adopted pygmy son Samedi. Sarno's life story is fascinating, inspiring and deeply moving. The film not only documents his life with the Bayaka, but also shows Sarno in his role as a dedicated ethnomusicologist (over the decades Sarno has recorded more than 1,500 hours of unique Bayaka music), loving father and tireless activist. We were touched by his life story as well as the news of Louis Sarno's passing and tip our hats to this man, who took the road less traveled.

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Nem Kaldı

Meet Derya Yıldırım & Grup Şİmşek AKA The New Anatolian Psych-Pop Sensation
 

Drawn in at first by the vibrant artwork, young singer and multi-instrumentalist Derya Yıldırım's voice on this Anatolian psych-pop sensation's debut EP literally struck us like a lightning bolt. Which brings us [...]

Drawn in at first by the vibrant artwork, young singer and multi-instrumentalist Derya Yıldırım's voice on this Anatolian psych-pop sensation's debut EP literally struck us like a lightning bolt. Which brings us to the rest of this 'outernational' five-piece, alias Grup Şimşek (Turkish transl. 'lightning'), composed of British drummer Greta Eacott (G-Bop Orchestra / One-Take Records) as well as three quarters of the respectable Orchestre du Montplaisant (Antonin Voyant, Graham Mushnik, Andrea Piro). Recently released via Bongo Joe Records / Catapulte Records, the group's 4-track EP has spent the day on repeat in our office, blowing our minds with a cutting-edge blend of psychedelic Turkish grooves and electrifying instrumentation: 

"Their debut EP kicks off with legendary Aşık Mahzuni Şerif's 'Nem Kaldı', a groovy lament with killer melodyline, where saz and synth wave through a stream of wah-wah guitar arpeggios. The Graham Mushnik-penned instrumental '3,2,2,3' is a 5/4 psychedelic mover lead by the acid sounds of the organ – a subtle tribute to the architects of Anatolian Rock, Moğollar. On side B, Derya delivers a splendid interpretation of Özdemir Erdoğan's song Gurbet. Gurbet is a Turkish word describing a particular form of homesickness: watching from afar as things turn bad in your [And finally,] 'Davet', a Grup Şimşek composition, is a dancy, Saz-lead song likely to shake many dancefloors with emotion. The lyrics are drawn from a poem by Nazım Hikmet, father of modern Turkish poetry."

Head over to the group's Bandcamp page now to stream all four tracks or hit play above to stream their lead single "Nem Kaldı", also available in video form below.

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My Word Is Free

Tunisia's Emel Mathlouthi Drops A Powerful Mix Of Traditional North African Music
 

Back in 2011, Tunisia played a significant role in the uprising now known as the Arab Spring with its own revolution, which resulted in the ousting of then president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and lead to the [...]

Back in 2011, Tunisia played a significant role in the uprising now known as the Arab Spring with its own revolution, which resulted in the ousting of then president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and lead to the implementation of a democratic parliamentary system. Around the same time, Tunisian singer/songwriter Emel Mathlouthi landed a viral hit with her powerful song "Kelmti Horra" (Arabic transl. 'my word is free'), which went on to become an anthem of sorts among Arab Spring protesters. 

Earlier this year, she released her latest album "Ensen" on Partisan Records, alongside her main collaborator, the French/Tunisian producer and physicist Amine Metani. Recorded in seven countries across three continents the album's expansive soundscapes feature additional production by Valgeir Sigurðsson (Sigur Ros, Bjork) and Johannes Berglund (The Knife, Shout Out Louds, Ane Brun). Leading up to the album, Emel put together a noteworthy 27-minute mix of traditional music from Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt and Mauritania for leading music/lifestyle publication The FADER.

"Growing up in Tunisia we were so open to anything that came from the West," she explains. "It wasn’t a big deal that it was from the other side of the world, and that we didn’t understand the lyrics... it’s such a shame that the connectivity and the openness doesn’t work both ways. Maybe this moment will help open ears and hearts."

Read the full interview here, watch the "Ensen" album trailer below and listen to the full mix in the player above.

Tracklist
Louisa Tounsia - "Al Bab" 
El Hadhra - "Fares Baghdad"
Chikh El Efrit - "Lach Tfakker Fia"
Bouètaiba Sghir - "Malgré Tout" 
Line Monty - "Ektebli Chouaya"
Ouleya Mauritania - Unknown
Unknown (old Tunisian track from the '50s)
Chichi Imam - "Idha Chams"

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