|Souad Massi سعاد ماسي|
|El Mutakallimûn (Masters of the Word)|
Souad Massi سعاد ماسي — El Mutakallimûn (Masters of the Word) (20th apr 2015, book & cd)•• Ambiciózní soubor s přívětivou tváří alžírské hudby: jemně vynikající, malátný hlas, přepracovaná zajímavá sada arabských básní s rozpětím od současnosti zpět do šestého století.
••• Algeria–born singer–songwriter heavily influenced by spaghetti westerns who molds many sounds into one of the more unique sonic experiences. Born: August 23, 1972 in Bab el–Oued, in the Saint–Eugène, Algeria
Location: Algiers, Algeria
Album release: 20th apr 2015
Record Label: Wrasse
01 Bima El Taaloul 4:02
02 Lastou Adri 3:41
03 Ayna 3:42
04 Hadari 3:50
05 Saimtou 4:48
06 El Houriya 4:11
07 Faya Layla 4:35
08 El Khaylou Wa El Laylou 3:46
09 El Boulbouli 4:17
10 Saŕďche 3:37
© Wrasse Records Ltd.
••• El–Mutakalliműn (Masters of the Word) mixes, and only Souad knows how to do this, folk and rock, singing in Arabic whilst combining Fado style and African soul music. Her melodic songs are universally appealing, covering topics from love to politics.
••• On "El Mutakallimun", Souad Massi has immersed herself in Arabic poetry and used some of the most significant poems from across the Millennium as the lyrics for her most beautiful collection of songs.
••• The revelation that a city ruled by a muslim caliph was once the intellectual diadem of european civilisation set souad massi on a journey of personal discovery.
••• Initially inspired by a tv doc about 9th and 10th century Cordoba and Andalusia, El Mutakallimun (Masters of the word) is the result of algerian singer/songwriter/guitarist massi’s archelogical search for the poetry of the andalusian scholars, set to music that moves through acoustic reverie, skipping light–jazz, reggae and sophisticated pop. a labour of love, made easy to listen to. the deluxe version is a beautiful book edition of the album featuring a deluxe 44 page booklet with all the calligraphy relating to the songs lyrics.
••• On "El Mutakallimun" (Masters Of The Word), Souad Massi has immersed herself in Arabic poetry and used some of the most significant poems from across the Millennium as the lyrics for her most beautiful collection of songs "I was fed up with all the images associated with Arabic culture," Souad says. "I wanted to pay homage to those mutakallimūn because they left us many beautiful things to share with people who don't really know about Arabic culture." Agitating, exposing, witnessing reality, aspiring beyond the present: all of these are here in this remarkable work. In the perception of the world, Arabs are caught between the extremism and the caricature: "It's true that one feels trapped," Souad says. "I was bathed in a lot of beauty through poetry, through tolerance, and now they trying to portray us like animals, whereas it was my ancestors who invented medicine. I can't accept that." But the poetry will always be there, inestimable in its greatness, ready to be discovered, to reconnect lost souls with a past that's worthy of pride. "When you read these poems, it makes you feel humble," Souad says. There are geniuses who've left marvels behind. And all I'm trying to do is make some person aware, though the medium of music, of a beautiful poem, and maybe that person will be attracted by that culture, that beauty. and make his or her own way. ••• http://www.amazon.co.uk/
Robin Denselow, Thursday 16 April 2015 19.00 BST; Score: ****
••• Algeria’s finest female singer returns with an ambitious set in which she uses her gently exquisite, languid voice to rework an intriguing set of Arabic poems that stretch from the present day back to the sixth century. Contemporary protest is mixed with reminders of classic poetry from across the Arab world, and though she sings in Arabic, this is an album that should have a far wider appeal — her gently sturdy melodies are influenced by western balladry, jazz and reggae, and translations of the poems are thankfully provided. Massi’s last album, O Houria, five years ago, was marred by some unremarkable musical settings, but here she is helped by a band that includes oud, banjo and piano, with guitar work from the inspired Jean–François Kellner. She should have got rid of the electric piano, but this is a welcome and thoughtful comeback. ••• http://www.theguardian.com/ © Massi Souad by C.Bellaiche
Artist Biography by Tammy La Gorce
••• Any written dispatch on Souad Massi is apt to turn up the words "Algerian singer/songwriter" before the reader can grasp that cultural strings have little to do with her appeal. That's unfair, given the lengths to which the self–serious but lithe–voiced performer has gone to establish herself as a citizen of the world.
••• Born into a poor Muslim household in 1972, Massi spent her formative years in Bab el–Oued, a suburb of Algiers, as one of seven siblings. She absorbed a love of music from her piano–playing brother who, despite protestations from their father, convinced their less traditional–minded mother that the guitar lessons she yearned for were worth the investment. By 1992, with Algeria in a brutal civil war and a 7 p.m. curfew in place nationwide, Massi's dreams of mastering her instrument seemed dashed; attending lessons was all but impossible, especially given her sex and Muslim–unfriendly jeans–and–sneakers style.
••• But life as a semi–shut–in had its advantages for Massi. Instead of stifling her creative instincts, it magnified them. The artist, like many introspective prisoners, dug deep, and through careful attention to American cowboy movies — The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, for example — Massi amassed a collection of favorite sounds. Soundtrack–derived country and folk songs delivered her to the radio dial, where she sought out American roots music. And strumming along eventually turned her proficient enough to join her first band, a flamenco outfit with which she quickly grew bored.
••• Abandoning that watered–down group would lead to a life–altering musical choice: Massi signed on to front Atakor, a heavy–rock band with political leanings. Her seven years with Atakor earned her a troublemaker's reputation in fundamentalist Algeria, where she quickly became the target of spitting and general scorn. And as the band called more attention to itself with what some considered inflammatory lyrics, danger encroached — Atakor's equipment was routinely snatched at false road blocks, and Massi, who had disguised herself by cutting off her hair and camouflaging her body with boys' clothes, nevertheless became the target of death threats after the release of a late–'90s Atakor cassette.
••• By 2000, Massi fled to Paris. Though she took part in that city's "Femmes d'Algerie" concert as a new arrival, she was contemplating a life outside music at the time; a quick–acting Island Records executive who extended a contract changed her mind. In 2001, Massi's solo debut, Raoui, was released on the U.K.'s Wrasse Records label. Like its follow–up, 2003's Deb, also on Wrasse, it concerned itself with the personal rather than the political. Melancholy ballads sung in Arabic, French, and English typically melted into rock, folk, flamenco, and classical backdrops. Those sensitive–minded reflections on love and loss, set to achingly pretty sounds that stray far from North Africa's traditional, pounding rai rhythms, also light up Mesk Elil (Wrasse), Massi's 2006 release. If Massi's personal transformation and her mastery of genre–jumbling is impressive, her voice is no less so on all three of her discs: the flavors of Merita Halili, Karla Bonoff, and Basia that float through are as universally appealing as the story of her struggle to secure artistic freedom.
••• 2001: Raoui
••• 2003: Deb
••• 2005: Mesk Elil
••• 2007: Live acoustique
••• 2010: Ô Houria
••• 2015: El Mutakallimun
|Souad Massi سعاد ماسي|
|El Mutakallimûn (Masters of the Word)|