Crossroads Music will present Noura Mint Seymali, one of the leading acts from Mauritania, on Sunday, February 26, 2017.
Noura is a skilled ardin (a 9-string harp reserved only for women) player and vocalist. Her band features the psychedelic guitar lines delivered by her husband Jeiche Ould Chighaly.
The current band features a powerful rhythm section, composed of Ousmane Touré on bass and Matthew Tinari on drums. Noura Mint Seymali released Tzenni, her first full-length album widely available to international audiences in 2014. It was followed by Arbina in 2016.
11. Jean-Guihen Queyras, Bijan Chemirani, Keyvan Chemirani & Sokratis Sinopoulos – Thrace: Sunday Morning Sessions (Harmonia Mundi)
12. Abou Diarra – Koya (Mix et Métisse)
13. Barcelona Gipsy balKan Orchestra – Del Ebro al Danubio)
14. Vieux Kanté – The Young Man’s Harp (Sterns Africa)
15. Orkesta Mendoza – ¡Vamos a Guarachar! (Glitterbeat Records)
16. Bitori – Legend of Funaná: The Forbidden Music of the Cape Verde Islands (Analog Africa)
17. Bonga – Recados de Fora (Lusafrica)
18. Harold López-Nussa – El Viaje)
19. Çiğdem Aslan – A Thousand Cranes)
20. Kepa Junkera & Sorginak – Maletak)
21. Moussu T e lei Jovents – Navega!
22. Terrakota – Oxalá (Terrakota)
23. Dawda Jobarteh – Transitional Times
24. Calypso Rose – Far from Home
25. Jitka Šuranská Trio – Divé Husy
26. Metá Metá – MM3 (Jazz Village)
27. Ana Alcaide – Leyenda (ARC Music)
28. Alsarah & The Nubatones – Manara
29. Constantinople – Passages
30. Söndörgő – Live Wires
31. Waed Bouhassoun – La Voix de la Passion
32. Bashka – Fihi Ma Fihi (Orient Records)
33. Zomba Prison Project – I Will Not Stop Singing (Six Degrees Records)
34. Fungistanbul – Phenology (Hits on Air Music)
35. Kolektif İstanbul – Pastırma Yazı (Ada Müzik)
36. Quique Sinesi – Cuchichiandos: Legizamón x Sinesi, Vol. II (Sura Music)
37. Quintet Bumbac – Libre Voyage dans les Musiques des Balkans (Collectif Çok Malko)
38. Acid Arab – Musique de France (Crammed Discs)
39. Mabiisi – Mabiisi (Akwaaba Music)
40. Bossacucanova – The Best of Bossacucanova (Six Degrees Records)
Noura Mint Seymali – Arbina (Glitterbeat Records, 2016)
I remember looking at the photograph of Noura Mint Seymali on the cover of the 2010 Glitterbeat Record release of Tzenni. Posed with her ardin or four stringed lute, Ms. Seymali possesses this little mysterious smile and an I-know-something-you-don’t-know twinkle in her eye. Then I listened to this remarkable Mauritanian griot singer, musician and songwriter and I knew what that smile and twinkle meant – this woman it utterly kickass.
Wrapped up in Moorish musical traditions, draped in desert blues and ornamented in some psychedelic rock, Ms. Seymali’s sound is razor sharp and savagely hip. So it must be that all the music junkies out there are jumping for joy because Glitterbeat is set to release Ms. Seymali’s upcoming Arbina on October 14th. I can admit that after I received my own advance review copy and gave it a listen it’s powerful, mesmerizing and utterly righteous.
Vocals belted out against a backdrop of the kora-like ardin, searing guitar licks offered up by Ms. Seymali’s husband and fellow griot Jeiche Ould Chighaly, thrumming bass lines by Ousmane Toure and rocking drums by Matthew Tinari, who is also the recording’s producer, puts Arbina squarely in the wickedly good section of desert blues/rock genre.
From the opening title track “Arbina,” Ms. Seymali and company savage out a sound that’s hypnotic and intensely satisfying. Comprised mostly of praise songs in the griot tradition where poetry and praise go hand in hand, Arbina sets us poor listeners on a path of fierce guitar laced grooves as in “Na Sane” and “Suedi Koum.”
Tracks like “Richa” and “Ya Demb” seems to shimmer up from the very earth they are that good. If that’s weren’t enough, tracks like “Ghlana,” “Soub Hanak” and the richly lush “Ghizlane” thrum with all the power of the ancient griots.
Arbina is fiery and ferociously cool. Arbina no doubt will earn Ms. Seymali another Best Female Artist in North Africa award from AFRIMA (All Africa Music Awards) to go along with the one she earned in 2014. Well earned, indeed.
Mauritanian sensation Noura Mint Seymali has released a new music video titled “Na Sane”. This song appears in Noura Mint Seymali’s upcoming album “Arbina” scheduled for release on September 16th, 2016.
The video was directed by Loïc Hoquet. Noura Mint Seymali’s band includes Noura Mint Seymali on vocals and ardin; Jeiche Ould Chighaly on guitar; Ousmane Touré on bass; and Matthew Tinari on drums.
Arbina is Noura Mint Seymali’s second international recording. Her previous album was the critically acclaimed Tzenni.