Top 10 World Music Sales for the week of July 20th-26th
1. V/A – Analog Africa No. 5: Legends Of Benin
2. Mahssa - Vol.1-Oyun Havasi
3. V/A - Sound Of Wonder!
4. V/A - Panama 2!
5. Amadou & Mariam - Welcome To Mali
6. V/A - Rudo Y Cursi Soundtrack
7. Goran Bregovic - Welcome To Bregovic
8. Joyce - Visions of Dawn
9. Selda - S/T
10. 11 albums tied at 10
Top 10 World Music Sales for July (so far)
1. Mahssa - Vol.1-Oyun Havasi
2. V/A – Analog Africa No. 5: Legends Of Benin
3. V/A - Panama! 2
4. Bebe -Y.
5. Chico Sonido - S/T
6. V/A - Black Rio 2 : Original Samba Soul 1971-1980
7. Eydie Gorme - Cantan En Español
8. V/A - Sound Of Wonder
9. Goran Bregovic - Welcome To Bregovic
10. 4 albums tied at 10
Do to an unforeseen glitch in the Amoeba Hollywood database, the mix CD by Amoeba Hollywood’s very own Mahssa was accidentally omitted from all the World Music charts up til now. A thousand apologies go out Mahssa and all those who have been deprived of her Middle Eastern Psychedelic mix CD, Oyun Havasi Vol.1. Released by B-Music in May, this tasty treat of Turkish, Persian and Arabic Psyche rockers could serve as a guide to explore the many gems hidden in Amoeba Hollywood’s Middle Eastern section. Only drawback to the mix CD is there is no track list. So if you love the sound of Turkish Rock and Iranian Psychedelic Folk, one has to dig, just like Mahssa has. No cheating allowed!
Speaking of B-Music, the latest installment in their Finders Keepers series is Sound Of Wonder!, focusing on Pakistan's little known-to-westerners “Lollywood” sound. What is Lollywood, you say? Lollywood was a tongue in cheek term made up in the late 80’s by Glamour Magazine gossip columnist Saleem Nasir because the Pakistani films that rivaled the Bollywood films were all filmed in the city of Lahore…get it? The Pakistani film industry thrived, much like India’s film industry, but had little success outside of Pakistan’s borders. The music on this compilation sounds like a low-fi, spaced out version of Bollywood music with more edge and Urdu lyrics. Most of the tracks on this compilation are done by composer M. Ashraf and singer Nahid Akhtar, with one track containing the legendary Noor Jehan, the legendary Pakistani singer who recorded over 10,000 songs in her lifetime and was the first female Pakistani film director. Of all the Finder Keepers releases, I feel this one is their strongest to date. Also available on LP.
Another strong showing on the chart is the latest Analog Africa series, Legends Of Benin. Along with the African Scream Contest release that came out last year and this release, African funk enthusiasts may forsake Nigeria for Benin if they keep bringing this heat. Also charting strongly, French/Balkan Goran Bregovic's collection of hits perked some ears up, especially after he wowed the audience at his L.A. show back in June. People spoke of dancing in the aisles and some, on stage. I was invited to the show but passed it up, and now I’m kind of kicking myself for missing it. Next time, next time.
Finally, after two years of hyping Chico Sonido, his self-titled release is out at last and it’s number five in our July chart. Perhaps this release could easily be placed in our Electronica department, because it has more to do with DJ Shadow, DJ Cam or even Cut Chemist than it has to do with anything Latin Alternative, but we love this release so much we simply hijacked it. Imagine nineties hip-hop beats with fuzzed out Drag Strip guitars, seventies “Musica Romanticas” minus a vocalist and a discothèque located in an airport and that might give you an idea of what this album sounds like. All in all, it was worth the wait.