Guardian Names 1,000 Must-Hear Albums (Part 2: N-Z)

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Submitted by nonesuch on Thu, 11/22/2007 - 17:00
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The Guardian has revealed the last batch of albums on its list of the 1,000 all-time must-hears. Earlier this week, we brought you Nonesuch artists A through M on the list. Here are N through Z, along with the Guardian's take on albums from Orchestra Baobab, Astor Piazzolla, Radio Tarifa, Oumou Sangare, SFJAZZ Collective, Taraf de Haïdouks, Rokia Traoré, and Wilco.

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The Guardian has revealed the last batch of albums on its list of the 1,000 all-time must-hears. Earlier this week, we brought you Nonesuch artists A through M on the list. Here are N through Z, along with the Guardian's take on each:

Orchestra Baobab: Specialist in All Styles (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 2002) "Until the arrival of Youssou N'Dour and his frantic mbalax style in the 80s, Orchestra Baobab dominated the Dakar music scene with their fine harmonies and blend of Latin and African styles. Invited to reform after a break of 16 years, they sounded as fresh and engaging as ever—and this time around, the quality of their recordings was vastly improved."

Astor Piazzolla: Tango Zero Hour (1986, r. 1998) "It's impossible to summarise up the career and influence of the great Argentine nuevo tango composer and bandoneon-player. However, this Kip Hanrahan–produced studio album caught Piazzolla and his New Tango Quintet at the height of their powers."

Radio Tarifa: Rumba Argelina (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 1993, r. 1997) "For more than a decade, Radio Tarifa were the quintessential world music band, mixing Moorish and African sounds and rhythms with catchy tunes. Singer Benjamin Escoriza adds a gritty charisma to the cleverly crafted studio concoctions of Vincent Molino and Fain S Duenas."

Oumou Sangare: Moussolou (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 1991, r. 1999) "One of the finest female singers in Mali, Oumou Sangare is a national celebrity both for her songs and for the messages behind them. On this early recording, she was backed by a small band dominated by guitar, kamelngoni and a mournful violin that matches her fine, thoughtful songs of advice to women."

SFJAZZ Collective: SFJAZZ Collective (2005) "Under Joshua Redman's leadership, the SFJC pioneered a new approach to jazz repertoire that complements their better-funded counterparts in the 'straight' world. This is the first of a series of beautifully recorded live concerts that uses Ornette Coleman's compositions as a springboard to new work."

Taraf de Haïdouks: Band of Gypsies (2001) "International success for these gifted Romanians took their government by surprise. This generous and energetic live album boosts the collective's family core with guests including Kocani Orchestra and Bulgarian clarinetist Filip Simeonov, resulting in exultant tracks such as 'Bride in a Red Dress' and the breakneck 'Carolina.'"

Rokia Traoré: Bowmboï (2004) "The most bravely experimental female performer in Africa, Rokia Traoré started out matching her cool, clear vocals against her own acoustic guitar and traditional instruments such as the ngoni. Here she is joined by the strings of the Kronos Quartet."

Wilco: Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2002) "By their fourth album, Jeff Tweedy's once stoutly country-rock group had spread their wings. Frazzled Krautrock, shortwave static and Tweedy's lovelorn melodicism formed the basis of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, to stunning effect."

Also listed were Youssou N'Dour (Immigres), Scritti Politti (Songs to Remember), and Caetano Veloso (Definitive Collection [UK]).

Check out the complete list at music.guardian.co.uk.

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Wilco: "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" [cover]
  • Thursday, November 22, 2007
    Guardian Names 1,000 Must-Hear Albums (Part 2: N-Z)

    The Guardian has revealed the last batch of albums on its list of the 1,000 all-time must-hears. Earlier this week, we brought you Nonesuch artists A through M on the list. Here are N through Z, along with the Guardian's take on each:

    Orchestra Baobab: Specialist in All Styles (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 2002) "Until the arrival of Youssou N'Dour and his frantic mbalax style in the 80s, Orchestra Baobab dominated the Dakar music scene with their fine harmonies and blend of Latin and African styles. Invited to reform after a break of 16 years, they sounded as fresh and engaging as ever—and this time around, the quality of their recordings was vastly improved."

    Astor Piazzolla: Tango Zero Hour (1986, r. 1998) "It's impossible to summarise up the career and influence of the great Argentine nuevo tango composer and bandoneon-player. However, this Kip Hanrahan–produced studio album caught Piazzolla and his New Tango Quintet at the height of their powers."

    Radio Tarifa: Rumba Argelina (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 1993, r. 1997) "For more than a decade, Radio Tarifa were the quintessential world music band, mixing Moorish and African sounds and rhythms with catchy tunes. Singer Benjamin Escoriza adds a gritty charisma to the cleverly crafted studio concoctions of Vincent Molino and Fain S Duenas."

    Oumou Sangare: Moussolou (World Circuit/Nonesuch; 1991, r. 1999) "One of the finest female singers in Mali, Oumou Sangare is a national celebrity both for her songs and for the messages behind them. On this early recording, she was backed by a small band dominated by guitar, kamelngoni and a mournful violin that matches her fine, thoughtful songs of advice to women."

    SFJAZZ Collective: SFJAZZ Collective (2005) "Under Joshua Redman's leadership, the SFJC pioneered a new approach to jazz repertoire that complements their better-funded counterparts in the 'straight' world. This is the first of a series of beautifully recorded live concerts that uses Ornette Coleman's compositions as a springboard to new work."

    Taraf de Haïdouks: Band of Gypsies (2001) "International success for these gifted Romanians took their government by surprise. This generous and energetic live album boosts the collective's family core with guests including Kocani Orchestra and Bulgarian clarinetist Filip Simeonov, resulting in exultant tracks such as 'Bride in a Red Dress' and the breakneck 'Carolina.'"

    Rokia Traoré: Bowmboï (2004) "The most bravely experimental female performer in Africa, Rokia Traoré started out matching her cool, clear vocals against her own acoustic guitar and traditional instruments such as the ngoni. Here she is joined by the strings of the Kronos Quartet."

    Wilco: Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2002) "By their fourth album, Jeff Tweedy's once stoutly country-rock group had spread their wings. Frazzled Krautrock, shortwave static and Tweedy's lovelorn melodicism formed the basis of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, to stunning effect."

    Also listed were Youssou N'Dour (Immigres), Scritti Politti (Songs to Remember), and Caetano Veloso (Definitive Collection [UK]).

    Check out the complete list at music.guardian.co.uk.

    Journal Articles:Artist News

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