Emmaar (Anti–)

SXSW 2014 Records


Emmaar (Anti-)

With violence and turmoil displacing them from the their native Mali, Tinariwen found familiar footing in the California sands of the Mojave Desert for the band's sixth LP. Whether or not their Joshua Tree abode reminded them of the Sahara – the bandmembers descend from the nomadic Tuareg people – the Grammy-winning eightpiece certainly fell into a deep, comfortable groove. Opening with an invocation from hip-hop poet Saul Williams, Emmaar unfolds at the unhurried pace of exile. Tinariwen means "open space" in Tamashek, and here their trademark desert blues slowly swirls across the arid abyss, hazy layers of hypnotic guitars crafting and dissolving a bridge from the Sahara to the Delta like a desert mirage. Addressing affairs back home, where Tuareg rebels fight for an independent state, Emmaar invites meditation not limited to those conversant in Tamashek. (1am, Bungalow; Fri., Speakeasy, 10pm)


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