Thursday, February 26, 2009

El Abranis....or les Abranis for stubborn Francophones

I recently found some mp3's of an obscure band from the late 60's. I somehow thought they were Iranian, naively mistaking an LP titled *Waking up Scheherazade* as a hint. They're Algerian/Amazigh in fact, -doesn't all ear-tickling Maghreb music lately seem to come from those regions?- Karim Abranis is the founding member and vocalist, so hence the band name. Turn your surname into the band, easy does it.

The edgy thing about Abranis music is that he tends to play western music, though in some way it doesn't sound western -ofcourse the vocals are done in Tamazight, a southern desert Berber language. It's more like a smooth fingered take through Northern African guitar/lute riff techniques and hidden background cultures.

Here some early 70's style pyschedelic rock from the *Waking up Scheherazade* LP, which is somehow described as an Arabian Psyche Nuggets compilation, resisting to push the Tamazight culture. Dig that lushly coloured artwork though!



El Abranis - Athedjaladde

El Abranis - Ayetheri a l'afjare











Both are songs that could have easily been put on Sublime Frequencies' recent & excellent Algerian Proto-Rai Underground LP. Perhaps an idea for a dusted Amazigh release?

Here's some more info on the band, on what seem to be a fine French sound blog. Plus a lofi blues song done Algerian style. Those funky background guitar beeps hit the spot.
http://radiodiffusion.wordpress.com/2008/06/20/les-abranis/

3 comments:

radiodiffusion said...

They were only credited as El Abranis for their first single, which are the two songs on that compilation. After that, they were know as Les Abranis up until recently, where it's now just Abranis - since Karim Abranis is now the only original member. He has a website and a FaceBook page.

SebCatLitter said...

hey, thanks for the info, that kinda explains things. keep it up.

[CyberKabyle] said...

Hello,

I'm berbere from Kabylie (berber province of algeria) and I know very well this band Abranis. I meet Karim the leader some month ago.
And Shamy the other leader ...

I can give you a lot of information about them ... if you wish ...

The 2 links to download are been expired ...

Can you post them again e langueg?

PS Tamazight is not only the language of south .... it's the language of all berber people from canarian island to siwa in egypt and from mediteranean sea the nort of Niger Mali ....