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Aziza Brahim – Mawja | Album Reviews

staticwire | April 1, 2024
Aziza Brahim Mawja

Aziza Brahim’s fifth album, “Mawja”, is a poignant and heartfelt exploration of her roots in the Western Sahara. With a delicate balance of traditional Sahrawi influences and modern musical sensibilities, Brahim carries the voice of her country with confidence, purpose, and compassion.

The album consists of 10 tracks that are richly embroidered with supple percussion, warm guitar melodies, and Brahim’s distinctive, mellifluous vocals. Each song on “Mawja” reflects Brahim’s deep connection to her homeland and her experiences growing up in the Sahrawi refugee camps in Algeria. Despite facing personal and geopolitical challenges, Brahim’s passion for her country shines through in every note.

The album opens with “Bein Trab U Iihjar”, a track that exudes a sense of urgency without being overwhelming. Brahim’s vocals, sung in the Hassanyia dialect, convey a depth of emotion that is both haunting and captivating. “Thajiliba”, a highlight of the album, strikes a perfect balance between melody and longing as Brahim addresses her daughter with touching lyrics.

As “Mawja” progresses, tracks like “Duaa” and “Ljaima Iikbira” showcase Brahim’s contemplative side, with dreamy melodies and poignant lyrics. The title track stands out for its dynamic shifts and intricate guitar work, while “Metal, Madera” channels the spirit of Brahim’s musical inspirations, such as The Clash.

The album closes with “Fuadi”, a reflective piece that captures the essence of the Western Saharan landscape. With the sound of woodwind instruments calling out over the horizon, Brahim leaves listeners with a sense of contemplation and introspection.

Overall, “Mawja” is a testament to Aziza Brahim’s continued evolution as an artist and her unwavering commitment to representing her country through music. With its blend of traditional Sahrawi influences and contemporary soundscapes, the album is a compelling and soul-stirring listen that resonates long after the final notes fade away.

On a scale of 0 to 10, I would give “Mawja” a solid 8.5. It is a standout album of the year that deserves recognition for its authenticity, artistry, and emotional depth. Aziza Brahim’s ability to capture the spirit of the Western Sahara and convey it through her music makes “Mawja” a truly exceptional listening experience.

Written by staticwire

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