Monday, 14 September 2009

Various Artists 'Ethiopiques 1'

Bored of music? Never-ending streams of obnoxious, pasty suburbanites with amplifiers? I was until I got volume 2 of Buda Musique's Ethiopiques series, and now I've never felt better! There have been 23 of them so far, and they are all far, far, far out. The agenda for the series is Ethiopian music with the occasional overspill into neighbouring Eritrea, but the sheer range of styles covered therein is as much, if not more, that what you might find in inferior countires that never knew the wisdom of Selassie.

I was going to upload the aforementioned vol.2 which focuses on urban azmaris, in fact I've been sitting on it for a while, but using somebody else's link is much easier and where better to start than the beginning? This is a snapshot of the popular Ethiopian sound from 1969-75, and despite using some US-style jazz and 60's electric instrumentation it is nothing like you've ever heard before; they completely made it their own, much like West Africa's ever-popular Mali music, but much strangers to the senes. The overall effect is something quite hypnotic, some truly weird loping rhythms here and some mind-blowing jazzstrumentals there, all entrenched in the meandering scales of traditional Ethiopian singing, percussion and perhaps a trace of gypsy music brings to mind the black Zionist link. Sometimes it sounds like a parallel universe, non-wife beating James Brown. There aren't any Yoobtube videos for this one so you'll just have to do the clicky-click - this is one of the best things I've shared in a while so ignore at your peril.

Link nicked from hee-yer, with a few others in the ridiculously diverse series aussi:

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