Thursday, March 11, 2010

Sublime Frequencies World Tour

After I'd named Choubi Choubi! Folk & Pop Sounds from Iraq as the #7 Repertoire/Compilation of 2005, some discussion ensued over on Facebook about the greatness of the Sublime Frequencies label. It was co-founded by Alan Bishop of Sun City Girls and focuses on lost musics from around the world. More info located: here.

Although pretty much sold out, they do have a few streaming samples for various albums at Boomkat. Usually 3 tracks each... Also, they've reviewed a lot from the label over at Dusted Magazine. So check them out too!

So anyway, here's a spin around some suggested listening from only a few corners of the globe. All the links go to YouTube, embedded ones are mostly clips I made for albums I've got. Quotes are from the Sublime Frequencies website.

Middle East and North Africa

Choubi Choubi! Folk & Pop Sounds from Iraq (2005) - V/A

"Yumma, Al Hilou" (Mother, Here's My Beauty)
"Ahl Al Aqil" (O People of Reason)
"Choubi Choubi" - all artists unknown
Meticulously selected from Iraqi cassettes and LPs found in Syria, Europe and the Iraqi neighborhoods of Detroit, Michigan, this unique collection of folk and pop styles displays a wealth of outstanding music that is exclusive to Iraq and has rarely been showcased abroad. There are many reasons why Iraqi music stands alone in the dynamic world of Arabic music: one example is the unbelievable rapid fire machine-gun rhythms fluttering atop the main tempo.
Unknown-titled song by Souad Abdullah

Omar Souleyman (Folk & Pop Sounds from Syria)
Omar Souleyman is a Syrian musical legend. Since 1994, he and his musicians have emerged as a staple of folk-pop throughout Syria, but until now they have remained little known outside of the country. To date, they have issued more than five-hundred studio and live-recorded cassette albums which are easily spotted in the shops of any Syrian city... Here, classical Arabic mawal-style vocalization gives way to high-octane Syrian Dabke (the regional folkloric dance and party music), Iraqi Choubi and a host of Arabic, Kurdish and Turkish styles, among others. This amalgamation is truly the sound of Syria.
Highway to Hassake (2007): "Atabat"

Dabke 2020 (2009): "Llansob Sherek"
and "La Sidounak Sayyada"

Guitars from Agadez: Music of Niger (2007) - Group Inerane

"Nadan al Kawaznin" and "Telilite" from Guitars from Agadez (2007)
Group Inerane is the now sound of the Tuareg Guitar Revolution sweeping across the Sahara Desert and inspired by the rebel musicians that started this music as a political weapon used to communicate from the Libyan Refugee camps in the 1980s and 1990s. These ten tracks are a combination of amplified roots rock, blues, and folk in the local Tuareg styles at times entering into full-on electric guitar psychedelia.
"Ano Nagarus" [live]

1970's Algerian Proto-Raï Underground (2008) - V/A

"Mazal Nesker Mazal (I'm Still Getting Drunk.... Still)"
by Groupe El Azhar
"Ana Dellali (I Cuddle Myself)" by Cheb Zergui
This is Rai Music from Algeria as you've not heard it before. In the early 1970's, a new group of singers and musicians were operating on the northwest coast and what they pioneered was a sound that eventually reached worldwide status by the end of the decade, however their names are relatively unknown to this day outside Algeria. This crucial and defining period of the development of Rai is criminally ignored and overlooked by Algerian music historians and Rai's fans. Due to censorship and government controlled music diffusion, this scene and lyrical style was forced underground and banned from broadcasts yet slowly built a small following around the seaside cabarets of Wahran (Oran).
"Li Maandouche L'Auto (He Who Doesn't Own a Car)" by Bellemou & Benfissa

"Malgre Tout (Despite Everything)" by Boutaiba Sghir

Group Doueh
If you think you’ve heard all the great electric guitar styles in the world, think again. This Saharan sand-blizzard of fine-crushed glass will grind your face to a bloody pulp. Group Doueh play raw and unfiltered Saharawi music from the former colonial Spanish outpost of the Western Sahara. Doueh is their leader and a master of the electric guitar. He’s been performing since he was a child playing in many groups before finally creating his own in the 1980’s. Doueh says he’s Influenced by western pop and rock music especially Jimi Hendrix and James Brown.
Guitar Music from the Western Sahara (2007): "Eid For Dakhla"
and "Wazan Samat"
and also "Dun Dan"

Asia and Pacific

Shadow Music of Thailand (2008) - V/A

"Luk Tung Klong Yao" and "Klong Yao" by The Son of P.M.
"Sawan Bangkok" by P.M.7/Jupiter
"Bangkok by Night" by Johnny Guitar
Shadow Music was a broad term given to the Thai guitar pop movement of the 1960s and the groups that came out of it, all under the profound influence of early Western rock and roll... Shadow records were often marketed as 'Thai Modernized Music' which it was in the truest sense. Traditional Thai melodies were given the Shadow treatment; incorporating rock, surf, a-go-go, exotica, soul, blues, Latin and other worldly styles of the times.
I think this is kinda related as well...

Cambodian Cassette Archives: Khmer Folk & Pop Music (2004) - V/A
An unbelievable collection of dynamic Cambodian music recorded between the 1960s and the 1990s, both in Cambodia and in the United States. A truly Khmer blend of folk and pop stylings - Cha-Cha Psychedelia, Phase-shifting Rock, sultry circle dance standards, pulsing Cambodian new wave, haunted ballads, musical comedy sketches, Easy-Listening numbers and raw instrumental grooves presented in an eclectic variety of production techniques.
"Blue Basket" by unknown artist
and "Sat Tee Touy (Look At The Owl)" by unknown artist

Folk and Pop Sounds of Sumatra - V/A
The equator runs through only ten countries on earth and I bet that you cannot name them all without consulting a map. Indonesia is one of them and the only nation in Asia with the equatorial stripe impaling it. There are so many different cultures spread-out on these islands, that it would take several lifetimes to experience them all properly. Within this umbrella of diversity is one of the world's richest and most dazzling sound museums. Sumatra is the northwestern entry point to the great archipelago. It is a large island approximately the size of California. There are jungles, mountains, swamps, various forms of myths and folklore, hustlers, Padang Food, Tigers, the Durian, dozens of cultures and languages, and more music than you've ever been allowed to hear. The selections on this CD are a combination of droning beat pop, pseudo-gypsy songs, jungle folk trance, and other improbable traditional and hybrid styles heard by only a handful of outsiders.
Vol. 1 (2003): "Indang Pariaman" by Samsimar

Vol. 2 (2004): untitled song by unknown artist

Singapore-a-Go-Go (2009) - V/A
Sublime Frequencies works its way down to the tip of the Malaysian peninsula with this superb collection of Singaporean 60’s beat, pop, and “off-beat cha-cha” instrumental classics from original vinyl 45’s. These 22 supercharged beat-a-go-go tracks defy a common held belief that the Chinese couldn’t rock, groove, or swing back in the 1960’s.
"Good Luck in the New Year" by Linda Yong and the Silvertones
and "Mimi Cat" by Chew Yan and the Stylers

Bollywood Steel Guitar (2008) - V/A

"Jan Pahechan Ho" by Van Shipley
Bollywood Steel Guitar is the most comprehensive collection to date of Steel Guitar pop instrumental music from India. All 21 tracks featured here were Film hits from 1962-1986 and all the masters of the steel guitar sound from the period are represented... An entirely different approach that rocks, swings, and grooves through some of India's most beloved film tunes, the electric steel guitar as lead instrument transforms the already infectious melodies into a multitude of higher sound dimensions.
"Duniya Mane Bura To Goli Maro" by Gautam Dasgupta

Guitars Of The Golden Triangle: Folk And Pop Music Of Myanmar (Burma) Vol. 2 (2005) - V/A
Most outside this Burmese region have never heard of Shan State, but this massive sub-tropic tableland has an average elevation of 3000 feet, perfect for the cultivation of poppies for which it is very well known (in fact and fiction) as the center of the “Golden Triangle”. Never before presented outside a tiny minority of the Burmese community, this unbelievable collection of garage and psychedelic rock, raw folk blues ballads, and country -western styled music is a product of Shan and Pa’o musicians hailing from the early 1970’s.
"Nga Ley" by Khun Kaung Kay Maung
and an Unknown-titled song by Khun Paw Yann

2 volumes of Molam: Thai Country Groove
Molam is a multi-faceted folk music native to Laos and the predominantly rural Northeastern region of Thailand known as Isan - home to myriad ethnic groups and provinces, and once a part of present-day Laos. Mo meaning "master" and lam meaning "song", molam literally translates into "master singer", but it remains more of an umbrella term covering over a dozen types of lam styles in which male and female singers can be backed by a free-reed bamboo mouth organ called a khaen, indigenous lute-like instruments (the phin or the soong), a bowed fiddle called a sor and a percussion ensemble featuring finger cymbals and hand drums.
All I found was this documentary trailer.

Choubi Choubi

Genre - World/Folk/Vocal Pop
Label - Sublime Frequencies
Myspace fan page -

Review - Dusted Magazine
Download/Lala - nope!!
Purchase - Forced Exposure

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