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Various

Music From Saharan Cellphones

Genre: WORLD
Format_dot_vinyl
Format: LP
Released: Dec 2011
Catalogue Number: SS003
Tracks for: Music From Saharan Cellphones
Time
1. VARIOUS / SAHELSOUNDS : 01
2. VARIOUS / SAHELSOUNDS : 02
3. VARIOUS / SAHELSOUNDS : 03

Boomkat product review for:

various - Music From Saharan Cellphones

'Music From Saharan Cellphones' is surely one of our most anticipated, exotic deliveries of the year. Serving both a glimpse into the rich contemporary culture of the Trans-Sahara and a bunch of music you've likely never encountered before, it comprises nine tracks transferred via bluetooth from the mobile phones of residents in Kidal, Northern Mali at the beginning of 2010. Apparently, across Western Africa everyone loves playing music thru their phone's loudspeaker - a practice which is usually, unfortunately frowned upon in the UK and elsewhere - with popular tracks simply spread via bluetooth from person to person, phone to phone, creating a profuse and uncontainable sonic landscape as diverse and transient as the sand ocean "port-towns" themselves. Kidal is one of these metaphorical docks, a major hub in the Saharan network, linking North Africa with Sub Saharan regions and further beyond, and it's also the locus of the record's compiler, Christopher Kirkley's attentions. He collected these tracks at night, swapping mp3s from his own collection for everything from local Tuareg anthems to DIY, auto-tuned HipHop produced on cracked software. We reckon you'll be genuinely surprised and delighted at discoveries like Group Anmataff's melancholy, low-slung Algerian drum machine and guitar groove 'Tinariwen' or the intricate drum programming and microtonal keyboard flourishes of Negib Ould Ngainich's 'Guetna', but best of all has to be the emphatic emotions of Mdou Moctar's swaying autotune ballad 'Tahoultine' or Bayta Ag Bay's forlorn guitar on 'Aicha'. OK, granted, the bitrates (included on the insert) are poor, but the mastering makes them quite acceptable, and really if you've still got gripes with it then you're seriously missing the point. And while the irony of these tracks being transferred from mp3 to vinyl shouldn't be lost on you, it's nevertheless a marvellous, beautiful record which has already had The Guardian and The Wire singing its praises, if that makes any difference. Wholeheartedly recommended!

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