Friday, July 24, 2009

CD Review: Tinariwen +|O:|

Imidiwan: Companions + DVD

The release of Imidiwan, which is Tamasheq for 'companions', is another superb musical journey from the Saharan blues-guitar group. Fans of their previous release, Aman Iman from 2007, will find all the tracks easily enjoyable. The opening, 'Imidiwan Afrik Tendam', is a catchy, invitational ode for African people everywhere. An equally engaging song, 'Tahult In', is only a few lines, but funky enough to please anyone. The entire album incorporates their signature use of tinde drum, female ululations, bluesy-guitar riffs, and lyrics describing the Saharan spirit with the rest of the world. Tinariwen never disappoints; and Imidiwan is no different. It's an album that stays with you long after the final track fades out. A special feature of this release includes a half-hour documentary of candid Tinariwen moments playing guitar, singing and traveling through the desert. For those unfortunate to have never experienced Tinariwen live, I have included a link to my concert review here to satiate your appetite: English subtitles are utilized, though sparingly, since this documentary is predominantly and observational examination of the music. Anyone familiar with the videography of Sublime Frequencies releases can attest to the very similarly observational, non-narrative nature of their musical documentaries. The liner notes are in Tamasheq and English to aid in following along, as Tamasheq language resources are relatively non-existent outside communities of indigenous speakers. As with Aman Iman, Imidiwan is also available on vinyl, but for an extremely limited pressing of 350. Come join Tinariwen as 'companions' on their musical journey across the globe. ~ Matthew Forss

No comments: