Natacha Atlas: The Best of Natacha Atlas (Mantra)

 |   |  <1 min read

Natacha Atlas: The Best of Natacha Atlas (Mantra)

Atlas -- born in Belgium but with family links to Egyptian, Palestinian and Moroccan cultures -- is one the most thrilling contemporary voices of the Middle East crescent. She came to attention in the early 90s with Jah Wobble’s Invaders of the Heart then the dance-electronica outfit TransGlobal Underground out of London.

Her solo career began with the Diaspora album in 95 and since then she has pursued her own path between traditional-sounding songs and dubby electronica with a hip-hop attitude. This 16 track collection draws from her solo albums to convincing trip-hop and often erotic effect.

Atlas brings in rappers (on the danceable Eye of the Duck) but is equally at home with a Egyptian string section (the mesmerising Ezzay). There are a couple of remixes here (she previously released a whole album of remixes) and it matters little whether she sings in French (Mon Amie La Rose), Arabic or English, her voice is a rare treasure. Terrific, except for the unnecessary version of You Only Live Twice.

And if you like the taste of this territory you should check out Malouma, The Rough Guide to North African Cafe, the Marabi Africa compilations and the other artists and compilations from the region which Elsewhere has posted.

Mesmerising. 


Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

ETRAN FINATAWA INTERVIEWED (2006): From sands to stadiums

ETRAN FINATAWA INTERVIEWED (2006): From sands to stadiums

Etran Finatawa have band members from two nomadic groups from around Niger, and play music which sounds like the raw electric blues from Chicago in the Fifties and Sixties. Their electrifying music... > Read more

Badma Khanda Ensemble: Mongolian Music from Buryatia (Arc/Elite)

Badma Khanda Ensemble: Mongolian Music from Buryatia (Arc/Elite)

The European Arc label is doing God's work in this world by bringing to light music from Eastern Europe right across to the shores of the western Pacific. Already in its ever-expanding catalogue it... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

The Replacements: Tim (1985)

The Replacements: Tim (1985)

The swaggering, often drunk Replacements hold such a firm place in many people's affections that singling out just one of their eight studio albums for attention is bound to irritate someone. Maybe... > Read more

Tahuna Breaks: Reflections (Chewy/Rhythmethod)

Tahuna Breaks: Reflections (Chewy/Rhythmethod)

While I understand the wide appeal of Fat Freddy's Drop -- a laidback distillation of reggae, soul and so forth -- it is too mellow for my taste. Tahuna Breaks -- who also distill elements of... > Read more