Les Filles De Illighadad – Eghass Malan
Les Filles de Illighadad present their first ever studio album “Eghass Malan.” The female led avant rock group hailing from the village of the same name bring their new genre of Tuareg guitar mixed with traditional rural folk. Versed in tradition, Fatou Seidi Ghali and her band have created contemporary studio versions that are unlike anything ever before recorded, transporting rural nomadic song into the 21st century.
Les Filles are all from Illighadad, a secluded commune in central Niger, far off in the scrubland deserts at the edge of the Sahara. The village is only accessible via a grueling drive through the open desert and there is little infrastructure, no electricity or running water. But what the nomadic zone lacks in material wealth it makes up for deep and strong identity and tradition. The surrounding countryside support hundreds of pastoral families, living with and among their herds, as their families have done for centuries.
The sound that defines rural Niger is a music known as “tende.” It takes its name from a drum, built from a goat skin stretched across a mortar and pestle. Like the environs, tende music is a testament to wealth in simplicity, with sparse compositions built from a few elements, vocals, handclaps, and percussion. Songs speak of the village, of love, and of praise for ancestors. It is a music form dominated by women. Collective and communal, tende is tradition for all the young girls of the nomad camps, played during celebrations and to pass the time during the late nights of the rainy season.
Recorded on their debut tour in Europe after just a handful of concerts, “Eghass Malan” maintains a feeling that is spontaneous and inspired.