Mauritania's Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla Releases Extremely Limited Edition Tour Cassette

After two weeks in Turkey, our hearts bleed Arabesque. So it may not come as surprise that we have developed somewhat of a soft spot for songs in a minor key and melodies dealing with unfulfilled love and the likes. Under any other circumstances we most likely would have filed away Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla's instrumental electronic keyboard flourishes as 'kitch'. But that would have been a mistake. 

Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla is one of the Saharan country's biggest stars. [...]

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Echoes Of Japan

The Minyo Crusaders Combine Traditional Japanese Folk Songs With A Plethora Of Global Styles

Well here's for a little something off the beaten path. All the way from Japan comes this big band that is quite unlike anything we've ever heard. The Minyo Crusaders just recently released their debut album on UK imprint Mais Um and we highly recommend you give it a listen. Led by guitarist Katsumi Tanaka, the 10-piece successfully reworks Japanese folk songs, also known as min'yō, with Latin, African, Caribbean and Asian rhythms, from cumbia, to Ethiopian [...]

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Strange Heat

Berlin/Potsdam-based Nine-Piece Wanubalé Releases Blazing Two-Tracker On Agogo Records

Hailing from Berlin/Postdam, the young nine-piece collective Wanubalé (Swahili for "Brothers") just released its debut EP "Strange Heat" on Agogo Records and is now set to perform live in Berlin tomorrow (Thursday May 9th, 2019) at XJAZZ

Drawing inspiration from jazz and club culture, Wanubalé bring an amazing energy to the stage, as they meld jazz, neo soul, funk and electronic influences into a cohesive and absolutely ecstatic whole. With all nine members [...]

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Daniel Weltlinger’s New Album Tells A Story About A Violin, A Story For The Ages

Yesterday marked release day for Australian-born and Berlin-based violinist Daniel Weltlinger and his brand new album. On “Szolnok” Daniel tells the amazing and true story of his grandfather’s violin, on his grandfather’s violin. Playing that same instrument from the eponymous Hungarian town (a name written on the label inside the violin itself), which his grandfather, Zoltan Fyszman, carried with him to the far reaches of the globe through the turmoil [...]

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Shik Shak Shok

A 24/7 Webradio Reconnecting Us With The Golden Age Of Arab Music

Moving right along, we bring you yet another great initiative from the Mediterranean Basin, aka Shik Shak Shok, a webradio or rather "the first online radio dedicated to fostering golden age of Arab music." Shik Shak Shok is the brainchild of Lebanese-born/Paris-based producer Hadi Zeidan and features an eclectic 24/7 live mix of Arab grooves, including jazz, funk, disco, tarab and of course bellydance. 

Founded in 2018, Shik Shak Shok has also accumulated [...]

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Zamaan Ya Sukkar

Belgium's Radio Martiko Unearth Egyptian Crossover Sounds From The 1960s

Belgium's Radio Martiko, reissue label, DJ collective and provider of "global eclectic supersounds", has been on our radar ever since we started this 'greedy' little platform of ours back in 2015 and we already had the pleasure to share their fabulous 2016-released all-vinyl mixes of hard-to-find Turkish treats and rump-shaking Egyptian rarities. Needless to say, even though the Ghent-based collective has been anything but idle, we haven't reported on them in a [...]

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Tel Aviv's Hoodna Orchestra Ready Ethiojazzy Studio Album #2

Widely heralded as one Israel's best live bands, Tel Aviv's Hoodna Orchestra is a musical force to be reckoned with. Last Friday, the brassy collective, composed of 11-14 members, officially released its second studio album "Ofel" on trusted German imprint Agogo Records and we are absolutely, positively dazed. The album was recorded live in the group's self-built home studio with guitarist and composer Ilan Smilan in charge of the entire production (recording, [...]

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Mosawi Swiri

Essaouira's Maalem Houssam Gania Releases Entrancing 6-Track Gnawa Album On Hive Mind

Back in 2017 Brighton's Hive Mind Records posthumously released an 8-track album of studio recordings by the late and great Maalem Mahmoud Gania, master singer and guimbri player. Now following in his footsteps, 23-year-old Houssam Gania is set to continue his father's legacy and recently released his own 6-track album on the UK imprint.

"Mosawi Swiri" features indigenous sounds from the "Gnawa ceremonial repertoire", including "a number of songs from the [...]

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Romanian Artist Cosima Releases Captivating 7" On Pingipung/Future Nuggets

Last Friday, German leftfield record label Pingipung teamed up with Romanian imprint Future Nuggets to present a hot new 7" release by Bucharest-based artist Cosima Opârtan, or simply Cosima, aka one half of proto-manele duo Raze de Soare.

Cosima – a trained architect, sound designer and co-founder of Queer Night (a local LGBTQ+ party series) – dubs her music widow pop, a melancholy blend of contemporary styles beckoning both to the past and the future, as [...]

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Munich-Based Jazz Quintet Fazer Release Blissfully Stunning Sophomore Album

Their self-released 2018 debut was an absolute sensation and quickly sold out on vinyl, while "Mara" went on to become one of the most streamed jazz albums of the year. And rightfully so. The Munich-based jazz quintet's organic sound thrives on spacious arrangements, as they move freely and effortlessly between composition and improvisation, producing beautiful melodies over polyrhythmic drum patterns and dubby basslines. 

Mathias Lindermayr (trumpet), Paul [...]

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Laylet el Booree

Blood, Sweat & Trance: Ifriqiyya Électrique Release Album #2

Several years ago Gianna Greco and François R. Cambuzat travelled to the Saharan Djerid desert of Tunisia to document the ancient, religious Banga ritual of Sidi Marzûq. With a background in the undergound post-punk scene of continental Europe and after months of studying, recording, filming and bonding, the two proceeded to integrate their findings into their own musical output, which was to become the contemporary five-piece Ifriqiyya Électrique.

"Their [...]

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Ilana: The Creator

Tuareg Guitarist Mdou Moctar Releases First True Studio Album On Sahel Sounds

Over the past years, Saharan rock has become one of the African continent's biggest musical exports, due to the popularity of meanwhile world-renowned desert blues artists the likes of Bombino, Tinariwen and Mdou Moctar. The latter would appear to be "one of the most innovative artists in contemporary Saharan music" and has steadily been making a name for himself with "his unvonventional interpretations, original compositions and verbose poetry."  Master of the [...]

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