If we listen closely, we find that the strange is often quite familiar. This valuable insight came to Alsarah through her work as an ethnomusicologist, and has been a guiding principle that she brought out in full bloom with Alsarah & The Nubatones.

Habibi Taal is a case in point. The languorous opening track from band’s debut, Silt, is a traditional Sudanese wedding song - usually sung by women - that is much maligned by the Sudanese elite. With her rendition of it, Alsarah proves that this music, considered by many to be odd and unworthy, will reward the attentive listener with much beauty and grace.

Although Alsarah has been living in Brooklyn since 1994, she still feels like a Sudanese in New York. This may as well explain why Silt - with its gorgeous Oud-solos and arresting vocals - sounds like a musical time capsule dating back to the Nubian sixties rather than 2014 New York. But if 2014 New York is what you’re after, you will find that her club-ready remix of Silt makes the point that the past n

'Alsarah & The Nubatones' at Beirut & Beyond International Music Festival 2016
 

Comments

Avatar 1
Post to facebook