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Tinariwen

The Radio Tisdas Sessions - 2022 Remastered Edition

    The 20th Anniversary edition of Tinariwen’s first studio album The Radio Tisdas Sessions has been remastered and repackaged with a bonus unreleased bonus track, exclusive photos and brand-new liner notes.

    The Radio Tisdas Sessions feature songs from Ibrahim Ag Alhabib, Kedou Ag Ossad, Mohamed Ag Itlal aka ‘Japonais' who passed away on February 14th 2021, and Foy Foy.

    Tinariwen are Tuaregs, children of a nomadic Berber tribe who have roamed the Saharan desert for thousands of years. Over recent centuries, colonialism has seen the Tuareg’s ancestral territory partitioned into distinct countries - Mali, Algeria, Libya, Niger. This drawing of borders has turned the Tuareg into ishumar, a displaced people in search of a homeland lost to them. Tinariwen’s music – a blend of West African traditional music and electrified rock’n’roll – speaks directly to this feeling of longing: a sound that critics have called “desert blues”.

    TRACK LISTING

    Side A
    A1 Le Chant Des Fauves
    A2 Nar Djenetbouba

    Side B
    B1 Imidiwaren
    B2 Zin Es Gourmeden

    Side C
    C1 Afours Afours (5:27)
    C2 Tessalit (3:58)
    C3 Kedou Kedou (6:13)

    Side D
    D1 Mataraden Anexan
    D2 Bismillah
    D3 Tessalit - Live At Festival Au Desert - Tin-essako
    D4 Ham Tinahghin Ane Yallah (Bonus Unreleased)

    Tinariwen

    Amassakoul - 2022 Remastered Edition

      Tinariwen’s breakthrough album originally released in 2004, now remastered and repackaged with a bonus unreleased track, exclusive photos and brand-new liner notes.  Amassakoul features songs from Ibrahim Ag Alhabib, Abdallah Ag Alhousseyni, Touhami Ag Alhassane.

      Tinariwen are Tuaregs, children of a nomadic Berber tribe who have roamed the Saharan desert for thousands of years. Over recent centuries, colonialism has seen the Tuareg’s ancestral territory partitioned into distinct countries - Mali, Algeria, Libya, Niger. This drawing of borders has turned the Tuareg into ishumar, a displaced people in search of a homeland lost to them. Tinariwen’s music – a blend of West African traditional music and electrified rock’n’roll – speaks directly to this feeling of longing: a sound that critics have called “desert blues”.

      TRACK LISTING

      Side A
      A1 Amassakoul’n’ténéré
      A2 Oualahila Ar Tesninam
      A3 Chatma

      Side B
      B1 Arawan
      B2 Chet Boghassa
      B3 Amidinin

      Side C
      C1 Ténéré Daféo Nikchan
      C2 Aldhechen Manin
      C3 Alkhar Dessouf

      Side D
      D1 Eh Massina Sintadoben
      D2 Assoul
      D3 Taskiwt Tadjat (Bonus Track Unreleased)

      The best Tinariwen album hasn’t been recorded yet. Perhaps it never will be. Because the best Tinariwen music isn’t the music they perform in front of microphones. It’s the music they play at night around the fire, back in their own country, amongst themselves and at their own pace. Having eaten, and drunk their tea, the men bring out their guitars, chat, remember old songs and let the music come. In those moments, the music can become like the fire, free, magical and impossible to stuff into a box. It rises up like a shower of sparks or a state of grace, without premeditation; the momentary manifestation of a friendship, a community, an environment, a history; the revelatory connection with something that belongs only to them, and goes beyond them. Their discography stretching out over the last 17 years, all the tours and the international recognition have changed nothing: Tinariwen are still a desert band, only certain aspects of which the western music industry can ever hope to capture and present. Tinariwen existed long before any of their albums were recorded, and they still exist quite distinct from their discographic dimension. So, the best Tinariwen album doesn’t exist. But it’s still worth trying to go and find it.

      The story of Amadjar, the ninth Tinariwen album, begins at the end of October 2018, at the Taragalte Festival of nomadic cultures in the Moroccan Sahara. After a concert and a sandstorm, Tinariwen hit the road and head for Mauritania, via southern Morocco, Western Sahara and the Atlantic coast. The destination is important (the band have to set up and record their album there, and hook up with the singer Noura Mint Seymali), but no more so than the journey itself. Tinariwen are joined by their French production team, who arrive in old camper van that’s been converted into a makeshift studio. The journey to Nouakchott, capital of Mauritania, takes a dozen days or so. Every evening, the caravan stops to set up camp and the members of Tinariwen get to work under the stars – a whole lot better than being in a studio after all – to prepare for the recording, talking things through, letting their guitar motifs, thoughts and long buried songs come. Then, during a final camp in the desert around Nouakchott that lasts about fifteen days, to an audience of scorpions, the band record their songs under large tent. In a few live takes, without headphones or effects. The Mauritanian griotte Noura Mint Seymali and her guitarist husband, Jeiche Ould Chigaly, come to throw their musical tradition on the embers lit by Tinariwen – the curling vocals of Noura Mint Seymali on the song ‘Amalouna’ will become a highlight.

      This nomadic album, recorded in a natural setting, is as close as you can get to Tinariwen. And also, therefore, to the idea that things can evolve: bassist Eyadou plays a lot of acoustic guitar; percussionist Said tries his hand at new instruments; Abdallah exhumes songs that he’s never played on stage with Tinariwen. And that violin that appears on several songs and reminds you of the traditional imzad? It’s actually played by Warren Ellis. The violinist in Nick Cave’s band is one of several western guests on the album. We also hear the mandolin and charango of Micah Nelson (son of the country music giant Willie Nelson, and Neil Young’s guitarist), and the guitars of Stephen O’Malley (Sunn O)))), Cass McCombs and Rodolphe Burger. The album is mixed by Jack White’s buddy Joshua Vance Smith.

      In the end, Amadjar tells the story of several journeys: the one undertaken to prepare the album, and the one that Tinariwen take between two worlds, theirs and ours, with that constant need to pass from one to the other before coming back to the roots. “I’m in a complete solitude, where thoughts frighten me, and lost in their midst I arose and noticed that I was thirsty and wanted water,” sings Ibrahim on ‘Ténéré Maloulat’, the first song on the album. A return to the source of Tamashek poetry. In the middle of other more political songs, through always desolate, these words express deep distress and survival, but also movement. Amadjar means ‘the unknown visitor’ in Tamashek, the one who seeks hospitality and who’s condemned to an inner exile, within a territory or within himself; just like the members of Tinariwen, who feel at home on the journey, around the fire with a few immutable songs. The best Tinariwen album will never be. But Amadjar is more essential than all the others. 


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Patrick says: Desert rock superstars Tinariwen's ninth LP is the closest the tuareg troop have come to capturing their live sound in the studio, largely because "Amadjar" was conceived, composed and recorded across a trail of temporary studios during a North African road trip.

      TRACK LISTING

      1 Tenere Maloulat
      2 Zawal
      3 Amalouna
      4 Taqkal Tarha
      5 Anina
      6 Madjam Mahilkamen
      7 Takount
      8 Iklam Dglour
      9 Kel Tinawen
      10 Itous Ohar
      11 Mhadjar Yassouf Idjan
      12 Wartilla
      13 Lalla

      Tinariwen

      Elwan

        In 2014 Tinariwen stopped at Rancho de la Luna studios in the desert of California’s Joshua Tree National Park. While location proved particularly propitious in terms of creativity, the human climate was just as favourable, as musicians dropped by to add their own touch. Piccadilly faves Kurt Vile and Mark Lanegan, Cat Power guitarist Matt Sweeny and Queens Of The Stone Age producer Alan Johannes all joined the band in the baking heat, bringing their contrasting but complimentary styles to the project. All of this was honed by engineer Andrew Schepps, who offered Tinariwen the same sonic precision he lent to Red Hot Chili Peppers, Johnny Cash and Jay Z. Two years later, in M’Hamid El Ghizlane, an oasis in southern Morocco near the Algerian frontier, the band set up their tents for recording, accompanied by the local musical youth and a Ganga outfit (a group of Berber ‘gnawa’ trance musicians). "Elwan" ("The Elephants") is musically powerful and thematically poignant: every song evokes a land that can no longer be found, with all the emotions this elicits, from nostalgia for a joyous past to the tragic recent loss of a territory and of the dream that it nourished. Vital music from the irrepressible Tuareg troupe.

        STAFF COMMENTS

        Barry says: As spellbinding as they ever were, Tuareg desert-rockers Tinariwen pull out another brilliant suite of hypnotising melodies, imbibed with pure dusty heat, traditional instrumentation and their own impeccable grace. As essential as anything they've ever done.

        Tinariwen

        Live In Paris, Oukis N'Asuf

          ’Live In Paris, Oukis N’Asuf’ was recorded at a very special concert at the Bouffes du Nord in Paris on Saturday 13th December 2014 and features the band performing alongside 75-year-old ‘grand dame’ of Tamashek culture Lalla Badi.

          The album’s title, ‘Oukis N’Asuf’, which, translated literally, means to take away, forget or get over heart-ache and longing. Asuf - the longing of the soul - conjures up the feeling of separation from the Touareg camp, the physical environment of the desert, its emptiness, its blackness, and its spirits.

          A hypnotic evening of guitar and tindé (small mortar drum covered by a taut goatskin) normally reserved for more in intimate spaces - around a fire in the desert in southern Algeria perhaps, or in the yard of a house somewhere in the northern Mali.

          Badi, who remains the queen of tindé (a word that denotes both an instrument played exclusively by women, and a poetic repertoire which is sung at ceremonies and special occasions), is originally from Timiaoune in the far south of the Algerian Sahara and now lives in Tamanrasset.

          She became a mentor to the Touareg in the 1970s, thanks both to her mastery of this musical genre and her commitment to the Touareg cause. Back then she took in the ishumars (unemployed vagrants), those Touareg who had set off to Libya in search of a better life.

          Like them, the future members of Tinariwen also fled repression and the crippling droughts of northern Mali in those dark years, stopping off in Algeria along the way. Lalla Badi took them under her wing, became like a mother to them, a big sister, an accomplice and the performance in Paris, her first show in France in over thirty years, gave Tinarwen the opportunity to show their respect and gratitude.



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