City Of Love

Ashkhabad

Released 09 May 1993

  1. Ayrylsa
  2. Aglar Men
  3. Bayaty
  4. Balam Seni
  5. Shalakho
  6. Yaman Ykbal
  7. Bibining
  8. Aisha
  9. Kakan Gyz
  10. Ketshpelek
  11. Garagum Keshdeleri

Liner notes

The Orient has always been a cultural melting pot and so is the music of Ashkhabad. Atabai, Gassan, Sabir, Kurban and Khakberdy play an exciting mixture of traditional Turkmenian music infused with elements from Persia, Azerbeidjan and Turkey. They have been influenced by everything they’ve ever heard: from the sounds of the desert to jazz and rock.

When John Leckie —best known as producer of guitar rock bands— first heard Ashkhabad, he was struck by their musical mastery and by the heartfelt beauty of their music. He knew instantly he had to go into a studio with them.

The result is a completely acoustic recording— truly unplugged. It captures the intensity of felling and the romanticism of Ashkhabad’s music.

Listen

Reviews

  • There can be no doubting their love of and commitment to their traditional music. Folk Roots (UK)
  • These songs are pure intensity, with a romanticism so different from the sticky sweetness of the popular silver-screen hits World Music (UK)
  • The ballads are tear-jerking, the dances wild, the whole sound so amazingly universal and yet so easily placed on the map. CMJ (USA)
  • Raw, startling, uplifting and beautiful...truly sensational Orbit (UK)

Further Listening

  • Yol Bolsin

    Sevara Nazarkhan

    Released 03 February 2003

    A collection of folk and peasant songs from Uzbekistan, a country that formally broke with the Soviet Union in 1991 and has worked hard to reassert its rich cultural identity ever since. Imbued with echoes of Persian classical music and the meditational Sufi tradition, traditional Uzbek music takes the form of poetic songs called ‘maqams’.
  • New Moon

    Abdelli

    Released 26 June 1995

    Abdelli is a Berber of the Kabyle people, indigenous North Africans who have inhabited the region since pre-Arab times. New Moon is the poetic and passionate music of a man who brings his ancient culture into the modern world through collaboration with musicians from South America and the Ukraine.

Further reading

Announcing Live at WOMAD 1982: a double album of unheard recordings from the historic first WOMAD festival

New reissue series ‘Africa Sessions at Real World’ out this June

Celebrating Africa Day 2022, we're pleased to announce a reissue series focusing on African artists.

Track of the day: ‘Gnawa Beat (Bayaka Remix)’ by Bab L’ Bluz

A new remix of 'Gnawa Beat' by Italian DJs and producers Bayaka.

Africa comes to Real World: revisiting albums by six legendary artists

Jane Cornwell explores our new reissue series 'Africa Sessions at Real World'.