matoub lounes4

“We had to give up Berber and reject French. I said no! I played hooky in all my Arabic classes. Every class that I missed was an act of resistance, a slice of liberty conquered. My rejection was voluntary and purposeful.” – Matoub Lounès


Matoub Lounes – Attan Ne Mmi

Oud, percussion, lyrics in a language holding fire underneath its tongue. His life work, soaked in lethal politics. We can start the journey by saying: auto-tune-free Berber freedom music.

the metadata for this album ZIP includes a Matoub Lounes facebook page.


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Elsewhere, Mike Davis reminds us that the swine flu issue is not a problem based in Mexico City, but one flowing from places like Tar Heel, N.C. or Milford, Utah – agribiz USA corporate farms and their foreign outposts. “Capitalism and the Flu“.

Although the Mexicans were the first to make songs about it.


Back in Brooklyn with a CIAFRICA woodcarving + at least a full day’s worth of north African music. Not to mention hours of interviews, but that’s another story.

Here’s new Moroccan Berber music from Hafida. Henna, check. autotune, check. animated butterflies, check. If you like these 2 songs you’ll like the entire self-titled album, it’s pretty much an extended jam.


And no, dear Hafida never turns off her autotune. If that’s not love, what is?


Hafida – Tifrkin Tena Ourtahlin + Ghayli Ghayteflt (buyable)

& video of a medley from the same album

Hafida ” Ayan dar illa zine ifkas lkhatr…”




Spacious and peaceful, gentle Amazigh production from one of the big groups in this style. Banjo, reverb, delay, more reverb, more delay, and those hard-panned drum machines.

[audio:Oudaden – Track 03.mp3]

Oudaden – track 3

i’ve been jamming to this song for awhile, thinking it was something completely different… turns out I nabbed it from Awesome Tapes. Full k7 here.

Oudaden neglects what appears to be their own blog(s), and some fans neglect kindly maintain what appear to be Oudaden fan blog(s).

It’s interesting to think about the decay of online information – from dead links slowly cutting apart our little connective webs to fierce new spam algorhythms quietly gumming up the sites you visit – or mimicing them. Some hacker specializing in legacy databases breaks into your old WordPress admin board and replaces everything with links to discount pharmaceuticals. 10 years from now? 5? How do the InterNests age?


as we think about degraded webs (allegedly spiders on benzedrine but i’m skeptical)…

let’s listen to more peaceful Moroccan music: faraway-sounding Maalem Mahmoud Gania, also twelve minutes long, as long as it needs to be.


Mahmoud Gania – Essaouira
Gania previously mentioned here.



Kingdom tonite on the radio! Tune in, this show should be good..

plus, Mode Raw blogs!

plus, 2 Amazigh pop jams as mid-morning fuel. REAL POP = INSTANT HAPPINESS with a dreamy aftertaste.



Takfarinas – Zaama Zaama

a big hit! Tamazight lyrics, French hook. This has been bootlegged onto the “Oriental Vibes” vinyl which Broklyn Beats stocked awhile back. Kabyle stormer with international legs.

& here’s one of those 10 minute Berber male & female autotune duets (which i can’t get enough of)


Varietes Amazigh – track 7


in London, the shop clerk looks at my Dutty Artz t-shirt and says: “where’d you get that?”

me: “I made it. This is my label. We hired someone in the States to make them.”

him: “Oh, OK. Well I just wanna make one shirt – for me. it’s gonna say: IF YOU’VE GOT A PROBLEM WITH ME, I DON’T CARE, BECAUSE THAT’S YOUR PROBLEM.”

He says it drained of all emotion, like he’s reading a grocery list. I’m startled and look at him to make sure it isn’t some kind of joke. It isn’t. I am in Britain.

I say “OK”.

He says “would you like a bag with that?”

I say “yes, thanks.”

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click on this if you want a t-shirt (or our music!), we have some left:

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AwTaFrAf mostly hangs out in sub-Saharan Africa, so when he heads north, I’m happy. Cassette from Berber country! with extra helpings of reverb and echo underneath that.

Oudaden – track 5