Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Taziri - Titi Robin with Mehdi Nassouli - Review

Dar Adiyel – Taziri – An encounter on Mediterranean shores –  Titi Robin, bouzouki, guitar and oud. Mehdi Nassouli, guembri, voice and percussion

Titi Robin

Taziri, which in the Amazigh (Berber) language Tamazight means "Moonlight", is a Mediterranean blues fusion, providing a musical bridge between the northern and southern shores of the Mediteranean. As Titi Robin puts it, "Taziri is there to brighten up your nights".

And tonight at Dar Adiyel, Taziri did exactly that. The only downside was the venue. Dar Adiyel is simply not big enough for the audience the festival delivers. The Sidi Mohamed Ben Youssef Cultural Complex would have been a far better option and allowed the audience to better experience the concert.

The first number featured Mehdi Nassouli on guembri and Titi on guitar and set the tone for a wonderful evening. What followed was more jazzy, a piece, enhanced by the addition of two more musicians - an accordion player and percussionist.

Titi Robin is a well known French composer and improviser who has developed a particular musical environment rooted in the Mediterranean world: the confluence of Gypsy, Oriental and European cultures.

Mehdi Nassouli on guembri

On the other hand, Mehdi Nassouli, from Agadir, is an upcoming star. After recording the Moroccan album Likaat he has gathered a following and a reputation that lifts him out of the usual gnaoua music scene. His singing, playing of guembri and his ability with percussion, put him in the class of a future Hamid el Kasri, but with broader musical roots.

Duelling percussion

A percussion battle between Mehdi and Titi's percussionist was a lot of fun, but it was the combining of all the group's talents that raised the concert beyond expectations.

Another gem was slow almost Taksim-like intro that lead to a gentle spoken monologue from Medi, which then picked up the tempo and became a highly charged Moroccan piece. The audience lapped it up and at the end of the concert departed wanting more. To which we can only add, inshallah.

Review and photographs: Sandy McCutcheon


No comments: