Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Show preview: Tinariwen 

Wednesday, Jun 16 2010

The term "desert blues" is more than a little reductive, but it does at least begin to describe the sound of Tinariwen, a North African group of Tuareg tribespeople. Over bass and hand percussion in swaying, trancelike rhythms that threaten to go on for hours or days, bandleader Ibrahim Ag Alhabib's guitar lines sting like sand in the eyes. In a way, every Tinariwen tune is just a section of one endless song, telling a story of homesickness and displacement that is elemental to both the blues and the Tuareg culture. But this is no drab, eat-your-vegetables world music. The band counts Robert Plant and Henry Rollins among its diehard fans for a reason: It rocks.

About The Author

Phil Freeman

Related Locations


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"