Pantropical: Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla (Sahel Sounds)
AHMEDOU AHMED LOWLA (MR | Sahel Sounds)
Mauritanian WZN (literally “instrumental music”) is energetic synthesizer freakout music from the Sahara. The style has has emerged as pop music, blaring out of taxi cabs and cassette shops throughout the country. Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla is one of the country’s biggest stars, who performs at lavish weddings of Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania, with a troupe of percussionists. His signature style incorporates wild flourishes (like playing with his elbows and head). Hypnotic and tranced-out, Ahmedou Ahmed Lowla transports Mauritanian classical music into technological futures; a Baroque rave, maybe, deep in the Sahara.