Over the last 30 years, there has been a slow, yet steady emergence from the Malian, and Western Sahara regions of a top-flight style of world music known as ‘desert blues’ or ‘desert rock’. Following in the footsteps of internationally renowned legend and grand pioneer of desert blues, Ali Farka Toure, fellow proponents of the evolving style, such as Tinariwen and Songhoy Blues have both made forays to Australia – and now it is the turn of Tamikrest.
Tamikrest have developed a strong reputation around the world as one of the most exciting ‘desert rock’ bands to emerge in the last 10 years.
Now, hot on the heels of their Asian tour, it’s time for them to bring their music to Australia for their first time, presenting their latest album, Tamotait and a selection of their back catalogue in a new format.
This tour will showcase the new trio arrangement, incorporating their blistering guitar sounds, tempered with drone-like elements that magically evoke the slowly shifting sands of their homelands.
Formed in Kidal, with musicians from Mali, Niger and Algeria, Tamikrest draws on the rebel Ishumar Rock, or Tuareg Blues, infused with rock, reggae, world music and folk to create a sound that is both global and utterly unique. Tamikrest means “junction” or “connection” in the Tamasheq language. Since the group members come from different regions, it’s an ideal word to describe the band’s ethos.
Driven from northern Mali by the fighting and burden of sharia law, the group is exiled to live in Algeria. Their music is a tribute to the Saharan Touareg identity, spiced up with modern influences (even utilising traditional Japanese music in one of their songs, Tabsit). Their lyrics are about the never-ending longing to live in a free world, with freedom from the oppression and many decades of civil war and unrest that has plagued their homelands.
Through the message of their songs, Tamikrest want to make Tamasheq poetry and culture accessible to inhabitants of a world larger than just the immensity of the Saharan desert and their African neighbours.
TAMIKREST 2022 DEBUT AUSTRALIAN TOUR
Wed 26th – MONA – Nolan Room, Hobart
Fri 28th – Strawberry Fields Festival, Tocumwal
Sat 29th – Meeniyan Town Hall
Sun 30th – Street Theatre, Canberra
Mon 31st – Sydney Opera House
Tickets available here