Various Artists: The Rough Guide to the Music of Morocco (Rough Guide)

 |   |  1 min read

Les Imazighen: El Aloua
Various Artists: The Rough Guide to the Music of Morocco (Rough Guide)

This is not the first Rough Guide to Moroccan music but, given how diverse the sounds are coming from that place, another edition is certainly necessary.

And when you hear the stuttering trip-hop of the dub-influenced El Aloua here (by Amiri Saqati, a side project of an earlier electronica outfit Aisha Kandisha's Jarring Effects) you know that this one is keeping abreast of the new sounds.

There are also funky manoeuvres (London-based rapper U-Cef with Boolandriks from his Halalwood album) and gritty hip-hop (K-Kayne have perfected the sandpaper vocals chantdown).

But the traditions are also respected (Les Imazighen, the master Musician of Joujouka) and formative older acts are also represented (Lemchaheb who were enormously popular in the Seventies and Eighties).

RGNET1266_2So this is quite some mix'n'match but it is held together by the Gnawa traditions and trance-like quality of much of this music. There are also fascinating instruments -- shakers, what sounds like slack single-string bass, cheap electronics -- alongside hypnotic string sections, scraped fiddle and those vocals which sound like they coming from atop a mosque at dawn.

With a bonus disc by Groupe Mazagan, this is a fascinating insight into some of what is happening in (recorded) music in Morocco. 

One for samplers too, I think. Much of this will be refreshingly strange to Western ears.

Like the sound of this? Then check out this and this.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Various Artists The Rough Guide to Rare Latin Grooves (Rough Guide)

Various Artists The Rough Guide to Rare Latin Grooves (Rough Guide)

For a very short while I played DJ in a fashionable bar for a few hours a night, about once a fortnight -- or a month -- or something like that. You can guess from my lack of enthusiastic... > Read more

Khruangbin: The Universe Smiles Upon You (NightTimeStories/Southbound)

Khruangbin: The Universe Smiles Upon You (NightTimeStories/Southbound)

As summer arrives our attention turns to slower sounds, but if the thought of more barbecue reggae makes you queasy then this (mostly) instrumental trio originally out of Texas can oblige with... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

ALL APOLOGIES: The insincerities of saying sorry

ALL APOLOGIES: The insincerities of saying sorry

An apology means nothing if you do it on Facebook or You Tube. Or Twitter or e-mail or txt. Or a talk show. An apology by an actor who cries probably doesn’t mean much. These... > Read more

Mixed Culture: Movement in Roots/Moving in Dub (Jah Youth)

Mixed Culture: Movement in Roots/Moving in Dub (Jah Youth)

No sentient being could doubt the global reach of reggae which we have essayed previously . . . but it is rarely better evidenced than the existence of this double CD: one disc of the rootsy... > Read more