Mdou Moctar – “Afrique Victime”
Tuareg guitar virtuoso and Artist To Watch alumnus Mdou Moctar is releasing the new album Afrique Victime, his first for storied indie label Matador Records, next month. We’ve already heard two songs from it, the fiery desert blues track “Chismiten” and the dusty acoustic reverie “Tala Tannam.” And today, we’re hearing the album’s title track.
“’Afrique Victime’ is a message to all of the countries with money and power who come into Africa and kill the leaders who try to empower the people and lead revolutions,” Moctar says. “This pushes the area into danger and instability and emboldens the terrorists, and it’s the people who suffer and have no justice. Africa is innocent. The French use our uranium, but 90% of the people here don’t have electricity. Imagine.”
“Africa is a victim of so many crimes/ If we stay silent it will be the end of us,” Moctar sings on “Afrique Victime,” a seven-minute groove that just builds and builds. “Why is this happening? What is the reason behind this?/ My brothers and sisters, tell me why is this happening?” The accompanying video for the song’s radio edit, directed by Sabrina Nichols, was filmed at an impromptu performance in Niamey, the capital of Niger. Watch and listen below.
Afrique Victime is out 5/21 via Matador. Pre-order it here.