Posts Tagged ‘arifa’

New issue (Oct 2015) on sale now!

Posted on August 28th, 2015 in News, Recent posts by .

Songlines October 2015

Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita; the voice of devotional Sufi music, Faiz Ali Faiz; and folk duo Martin Simpson & Dom Flemons 

The October 2015 (#111) edition is on sale in the UK from today. The free exclusive 15-track covermount CD features ten tracks from our latest Top of the World albums and a guest playlist by guitarist and record producer Phil Manzanera.

Featured on the Top of the World CD are new tracks from the kora and cello duo Ballaké Sissoko & Vincent Segal, South African a capella trio The Soil, and Colombian salsa collective La-33.

• Seckou Keita – The kora player talks to Jane Cornwell about his latest solo project and his journey so far.
• Iness Mezel – The French-Algerian singer tells Alexandra Petropoulos about the magical world of Berber traditions and beliefs that inspired her new album.
• Kaushiki Chakrabarty – The khayal singer speaks about her demanding yet expressive North Indian classical vocal style.
• Dom Flemons & Martin Simpson – After a much-lauded collaboration last year, Julian May catches up with the duo before they embark on another musical adventure.
• Arifa – The Dutch group talk about their latest Eastern-influenced project.

• Beginner’s Guide: The leading voice in qawwali, Faiz Ali Faiz.
• My World: A playlist and interview with record producer and guitarist Phil Manzanera.
• Postcard from Louisiana, US.
• Introducing… Ngawang Lodup and Khiyo.
• Spotlight on Daby Touré.
• Quickfire: Blick Bassy, Heidi Tidow and Chris Eckman.
• What’s New, including the documentary They Will Have to Kill Us First, Cheikh Lô at the 17th WOMEX Awards, Youssou N’Dour, and a snapshot of the Songlines team’s summer.
• Reviews of the latest CD and world cinema releases.

Buy the new issue here.

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New issue preview: October (#111)

Posted on August 14th, 2015 in News, Recent posts by .

Songlines October 2015

A Man in Motion; over the past decade the various projects of Seckou Keita have been discussed within our pages. His latest album and tour features only him and the 22 strings of his kora; we talk to him about his journey so far.

Other features include Martin Simpson & Dom Flemons who we catch up with after their much-lauded collaboration last year; we talk to Dutch group Arifa about their latest Eastern-influenced project; an interview with khayal singer Kaushiki Chakrabarty; plus the latest CD and world cinema reviews to get stuck into.

The issue’s Top of the World covermount CD includes brand new tracks from La-33, The Soil, Amadou Balaké and Cabruêra, plus an exclusive playlist from musician and record producer Phil Manzanera, who talks about some of his favourite artists from around the world.

On sale in the UK from August 28. Click here to purchase your copy now.

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Top of the World: Arifa – Anatolian Alchemy

Posted on March 2nd, 2013 in Recent posts, Reviews by .

Words by Ton Maas

Second album strikes gold

Arifa’s second CD may not sweep you off your feet like an avalanche but, like the Pied Piper, these four musicians from places as varied as Turkey, Romania, Germany and the Netherlands, will irresistibly lure you into their magical world. This time around that world has a less obvious Middle Eastern flavour than before, mainly because Osama Abdulrasol’s qanun has been replaced by Franz von Chossy’s grand piano. But his thoughtful and sparing use of the keyboard helps keep the music transparent and open. It also has a dreamy quality, conjuring up lush soundscapes that are rich in detail, and subtle shifts in mood and pace. Anatolian Alchemy easily surpasses the level of Beyond Babylon, their debut album [reviewed in #74], which earned them praise around the globe.

Despite its classical feel, this music was never meant to be purist in any sense of the word. Yes, it’s predominantly acoustic, with clarinet, oud (lute), piano and percussion, but both von Chossy and clarinet player Alex Simu add subtle layers of electronic effects to their playing. These musicians have grown far beyond the need to impress with a display of their chops. Instead, every note played is subservient to the whole. True mastery shines through in the seemingly casual precision with which even the most complex arrangements are executed. But what makes the album really shine is Simu’s honey-sweet and lyrical clarinet-playing on instruments custom-built to his own design. There’s also the sheer beauty of the compositions, most of them penned by Simu but honed to perfection by the quartet. This is music that can make you shiver with delight.

Track to try: Maktub

Click here to buy the album on Amazon

Click here to download the album on iTunes

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