Sweet, sweet perfume

Culture Musical Club

Waridi, Scents of Zanzibar/Waridi:Parfums de Zanzibar (US: EMI import/Europe: Jahazi
Media, 2004)

The soul of Stone Town is captured in these very atmospheric recordings of Zanzibar’s best-known musical export. 2004 will prove to be the time of the great unveiling of this hitherto little-heeded island’s musical culture. The stately orchestral rhythms and the dignified, Arabic-style vocal are captured in all their (live) glory on this excellent release. The orchestra play a broad variety of instruments of local and global origin – qanun (zither) ud,
accordion, violins, percussion etc. The album’s arrival coincides with the first proper tour by Culture Musical Club around Europe. Their schedule includes an appearance or two at the annual WOMAD surfeit of world sounds at the end of July, no doubt many fans will be caught up by this superb music en route. Zanzibar is an increasingly
important Swahili cultural centre, hosting as it does two international annual events – the Festival of the Dhow Countries, celebrating African & international film & music, and Sauti za Busara (Sounds of Wisdom music festival) which had a much-publicized debut early in 2004. Show your appreciation for an ancient culture which can still proudly display its roots.

Waridi, Scents of Zanzibar