Imarhan Timbuktu: Akal Warled (Clermont Music)
The Tuareg are a traditionally nomadic people roaming the southern Sahara. Life had been rough for them in recent years with the Libyan civil war and the rise of Islamic fundamentalism forcing many into refugee camps. One bright note has been the emergence of a distinctive Tuareg rock-meets-tribal music that has gained an audience around the world, including recent performances at SXSW. Imarhan Timbuktu are representative of the sound. The electric guitars accompanied by foot-stomping syncopation, call-and-response vocals and ululations coalesce into what rock ’n’ roll might have sounded like had it been born around a campfire under the desert sky.