On May 21, Matador Records will release Afrique Victime, the long-awaited new album by Mdou Moctar.
With Afrique Victime the prodigious Tuareg guitarist and songwriter rips a new hole in the sky – boldly reforging contemporary Saharan music and “rock music” by melding guitar pyrotechnics, full-blast noise, and field recordings with poetic meditations on love, religion, women’s rights, inequality, and Western Africa’s exploitation at the hands of colonial powers.
Today, watch a video for the new song “Tala Tannam.” While Mdou and his band are renowned for their volume and energy (see album opener “Chismiten”), this song is largely unplugged – tracking a simple melody and a mellow, hypnotic beauty.
“Tala Tannam means your tears,” says Mdou. “It is another love song of which I’m very fond.”
The clip was filmed in Niamey, Niger last year when bassist Mikey Coltun made the long journey to meet his bandmates and begin prep for the album’s release. “While the song talks about love, we wanted to show the love between friendships and the love of Niger,” says Coltun. “The video includes friends and family –in the Tuareg community in villages around Niamey as well as Hausa people from villages in the Dosso region.”
Photo credit: WH Moustapha