Noura Mint Seymali

26/08/2016Introducing A New Era In Moorish Tradition

When her debut album "Tzenni" impacted in 2014, Noura Mint Seymali hit the ground running. As expressed via NPR: "the arrival of [this] Mauritannian vocalist in front of Western audiences feels like the start of a new era". And indeed, so it is.

In a whirlwind of events Noura was awarded "Best Female Artist from North Africa" at the African Union's 2015 AFRIMA awards and this summer, took to the stage alongside Damon Albarn and The Orchestra of Syrian Musicians for a European tour presented by Africa Express. Now, she is set to release her sophomore album on Glitterbeat.

So far we only got to hear "Arbina", the title track of her upcoming release, but we assure you that it is absolutely electrifying. On lead vocals and ardin (Mauritanian harp) Noura evokes deep emotion, voiced over a driving beat that is equally transient as it is enticing. To put things into perspective:

"Delving deeper into the wellspring of Moorish roots, as is after all the tried and true way of the griot, the album strengthens her core sound, applying a cohesive aesthetic approach to the reinterpretation of Moorish tradition in contemporary context. [...] Arbina refines a sound that [Noura and her band] gradually intensified over years of touring, aiming to posit a new genre from Mauritania, distinct unto itself; music of the 'Azawan'.” – Glitterbeat Records

For now, feel free to listen to the track in the player above and check out the music video to "Na Sane" below, which was shot on a recent roadtrip through Mauritania. "Arbina" releases on September 16th.

Further reading: NPR

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom