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Diwan Import

23 customer reviews

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Diwan
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Audio CD, Import, March 16, 1998
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Audio, Cassette, June 9, 1998
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$12.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 3 left in stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The 1998 sophomore release from the Algerian singing superstar who shifts effortlessly between Rai, Blues, Rock, Dance and other worldly styles of music. This was a groundbreaking album that helped set the stage for others to break through and be recognized with the emergence of Rai based music in the late 1990's. Taha showed the way to incorporate Western influences to appeal to a wider audience.

Amazon.com

The second collaboration between Taha, an Algerian living in France, and '70s prog rocker Steve Hillage, Diwan carries forward the old/new hybrid of 1996's Ole Ole. Taha is clearly familiar with ancient Middle Eastern melodies, but he's also comfortable with the dance rhythms of Parisian nightclubs. Traditionalists will find the straightforward melodies and instrumentation of "Habina" and "Ach Adani" the most satisfying, but Diwan's most adventurous track, "Bent Sahra," may be its best. Instead of strings, the song leans heavily on an industrial beat and the hypnotic mantra of a guest female vocalist. Though not for purists, it perfectly captures the urban throb of Paris and the intense dislocation felt by every immigrant. --David Bombeck


Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 16, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Barclay
  • ASIN: B000007NTS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,101 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By pma on February 5, 2004
Format: Audio CD
"Diwan" is a really rich album - a great way to introduce others to rai music without losing itself to Western studio overproduction. Some other readers' comments seem confusing to me. 6 minutes too long for a song? Obviously that person isn't familiar with traditional Arabic music where songs can go on for what seem like eons. Of course, "Ya Rayah" is the anchor to this album - the one song (if any of Taha's) that anyone would know, but the other's are just as good. I enjoy the change in tempo and intensity of "Habina", and the good times that "Ida" seems to evoke. Rachid's voice is raw and unmodified, which makes the songs all the more genuine. "Diwan" is definitely a keeper, and also is his most consistent album.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 28, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Having listened to mostly traditional North African music, my first exposure to Rachid (and urban Algerian music) was having heard 'Ya Rayah' on a local world music radio show. I absolutely had to have this cd after hearing that cut, and now I listen to the entire cd at least once a day. It is impossible for me to sit still when the music is playing. Rachid Rocks!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By K.Khan on March 30, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I am not of Arabian descent but having lived in Arab lands for more then half of my life, I know the sounds well of different Arabic music and am quite intimate with the culture. I first heard of Rachid Taha on the 1,2,3 Soleils live album with Faudel and Khaled, A great live recording, The only weakness I felt was Rachid, his music does not fit well within live settings.
In collaboration with his producer Steve Hillage , i think thats the name..this record is very classical arabic music mixed with a hint of western influences. It relies a lot on the Industrial groove sound with big thumping basses but middle eastern melodies.
Rachid's album after this, "Medina" is 90 degrees on this one. It is the same but the opposite. There is more western influence on their and eastern snippets while here its the opposite.
this one,Its very interesting to listen to, and though Taha's vocal prowess is really nothing to be proud of, the way his music is, its quite something. Ive heard lots of middle eastern artists and people with the same sound. If anyone will take newer sounds of middle eastern music to new heights. It is Rahid Taha. He brings in a very eclectic fresh sound to middle eastern music which really honestly purely traditionaly sounds the same all the time.
if you want to see what his next album "Medina" is like, check out "Barra Barra" the track from the movie ,Black Hawk down.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Muselover on January 21, 2000
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I rarely enjoy "blends" of roots music with modern, urban music, but I have to make an exception for Rachid Taha. I really enjoy the enthusiasm and joy he exudes on this album, and the combination of traditional and contemporary works great here, in my opinion. He's singing in the Arabic tradition, which might sound "off-key" to western ears, but I really think the album deserves enough attention to learn to understand and enjoy this tradition.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Martha Grenon on October 27, 2003
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I had no idea what to expect when I purchased "Diwan" in cassette format several years ago. It had been highly recommended in the hi-tech mag "Wired", and, being interested in world music, I decided to take a chance.
I've now just about worn it out, having listened to it countless times. With "Diwan" in my pocket I go out for a brisk two-mile walk every evening and this guy rocks! And I rock as I walk, snapping my fingers to the infectious beat. It's fantastic music and I defy anyone to keep still once they hear it!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Zekeriyah VINE VOICE on October 15, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Rachid Taha is easily one of my favorite Franco-Algerian artists in recent years. I fell in love with his song "Ya Rayah" and went out and bought this CD immediately afterwards. The haunting exoticism of the first track alone should be enough to get anyone to buy it, but theres far more to this CD than just that. In songs such as "Bent Sahra" and others, he weaves together his lyrics so well that it truely speaks to the heart. And the synthesized instrumentals are equally impressive. However, theres something more to Rachid Taha than this as well. Rachid Taha has an ecclectic style that, while certainly drawing on his Algerian background, goes far beyond Rai, East-West Fusions or anything else. Rachid Taha defies all attempts to pigeon hole him, and I think that is one thing to keep in mind with this album. Rachid Taha simply is a superb musician, and you'll be alot more comfortable listening to him than figuring out what he is like.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By RvlrOcelot@aol.com on March 18, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I first heard the opening song of this album back in, oh, 1996. Ya Rayah, with its mixture of deep percussion and gravely vocals instantly hit me as something new, exciting, and plain awesome. I picked up the CD without having listened to the rest of it, and kept the first track on repeat for several days. And what a song! Ya Rayah is easily the reason to buy this CD, if nothing else. And while I'm up at 2 AM, I might as well point out that the rest of the tracks, while good and in some cases great, are a bit loud. They've kept me up. But, there's always that sensation, that impulse to jump up from your chair and start shakin' that belly and dancing humorous jigs. Buy the CD, and interest your wife in belly dancing classes. You'll love it, I guarantee.
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