From the first notes of this album (loud and piercing as they are) you know the band are aiming to take you and themselves to a place of great exhilaration. This album could sit comfortably among the output of Tinariwen, Imaran and Tamikrest and is, to my ears, heavier and more raw, than anything that these groups have created.
Favorite track: Zabaya.
Archival recordings from Niger’s seminal psych outfit, Azna de L’Ader. Intense shrieking solos, fuzzed out guitar, and hypnotic crashing drums, Azna de L'Ader was not only the first rock band in Niger but possibly the most psychedelic. This is West Africa’s answer to Zamrock.
Led by Niger guitar legend Mona - known for his Hendrix inspired outfits and guitar playing - Azna plays in a style deeply indebted to Western rock, but infused with local rhythms. The name Azna is a reference to the pre-Islamic animist religions of central Niger, and the trance inducing music of the Bori possession cults.
Playing in their home country for 40 years and one of the first generation of modern music in Niger, Azna de L'Ader lived in a remote region and never released any recordings until now. This compilation highlights some of their only recordings left, compiled from the remaining archives of one of Niger's most famous unknown bands.
released April 25, 2016
Mastering by Timothy Stollenwerk
Cover design Félicité Landrivon
Liner notes by Christopher Kirkley
Thanks to Laouali Chaibou (ORTN)
& Moussa Mohamed Abdoulahi
Ishumar music, strong and sweet as Tuareg tea. Another essential Malian guitar album. Look up at the constellations tonight, find the three stars that form Orion's guitar strap, and listen. Lorena Moore