Sunday, October 30, 2011

Rimitti | Hina ou Hina


Listen to "Skerna And Amara"

Get the whole thing here.

I found this in one of many now-closed Arabic music places in Bayridge, Brooklyn, maybe three years ago or so. Each of those no-longer-existent places had a section of rai music, but for some reason, this was the only Rimitti I was ever able to find there.

Cheikha Rimitti is, of course, legendary. A bit about her here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Uncreative Genius | Alt Japan


Listen to a mind-blowing remix of James Brown's "Super Bad"

Listen to a fabulous breakcore track

And if those two don't convince you, this will

Get all 50 songs here.

A collection of Japanese covers, remixes, pastiche, breakcore, retro and beyond, culled after reading Simon Reynolds' Retromania.

I was a huge fan of Simon Reynolds' Rip It Up And Start Again, a terrific critical and social history of British and American 80s post-punk. So when Retromania was published, I descended on a copy like the admitted culture vulture that I am.

It's a brilliant book. I think anyone interested in pop music, or more generally, in pop culture, should read it. But I didn't agree with all of it. And I definitely wasn't sympathetic to the book's almost non-existent coverage of non-Western pop. If you've read the book yourself, you can probably guess what chapter raised most of my hackles. That's right, Chapter 5: Turning Japanese: The Empire of Retro and the Hipster International. The one chapter that even acknowledges that other cultures produce pop--in this case, Japanese Shibuya-kei artists.

I'm hardly an expert on Japanese pop music. I've been there twice for very limited visits. I do have, however, a rather fabulous collection of CDs and MP3s of Japanese alt pop that, if nothing else, proves that this music is about something more than mere "consumer affluence." Also, it isn't particularly "Japanese" to mimic others in the creation of one's "own" pop culture. This is something the entire First World is adept at/reliant upon, especially the British, and especially 60s British pop artists.

I'm not going to launch a critique of the book--which you can (and should) read for yourself. Instead, I've put together a sonic riposte that, whether or not you've read Reynold's book, I'm pretty sure you'll love.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sabahat Akkiraz | Türkü Hayattır


Listen to the first song on this CD

Get it all here.

Found at Uludag Video, 1922 Ave W, Brooklyn. Alas, they ceased selling imported CDs a couple of years ago, saying it cost more to import audio than they were able to make back. They're now (assuming they're still there) simply renting and selling pirated DVDs of Turkish movies.

A rather mind-blowing song by Akkiraz via YouTube: