Tinariwen share new song “Assawt” — listen

The bold, rhythmic song addresses the "Tamashek women searching for their freedom"

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    After being forced out of their native Mali by jihadi forces and human traffickers, the Tuareg musicians of Tinariwen found shelter in Joshua Tree National Park. There, they recorded their 2014 album Emmaar and this year’s Elwan, which will drop on February 10th via Anti-. Now, Flood Magazine has premiered a new song from that album, “Assawt”, which addresses the Saharan women being oppressed under the land’s current regime.

    Gripping yet anxious, the song is driven by the group’s hypnotic guitars and rhythmic percussion, which underscore emphatic gang vocals. Listen to the song below:

    A press release from the band provides an English translation of the song’s lyrics:

    “That’s the voice
    of the Tamashek women
    Searching for their freedom.
    Those are the thoughts
    of the old women
    Living in a Sahara devoid of water,
    Desiccated and miserable,
    My wish is for it
    to stop being subservient.
    This is a message for those
    Who toil for the revolution.”


    The Grammy-winning group recruited an impressive group of collaborators for Elwan, including Kurt Vile, Mark Lanegan, Matt Sweeney, and Alain Johannes. Clearly inspired by the political strife of their homeland, Tinariwen describes the album as a “road record,” in that “ each song [evokes] a land that can no longer be found.”

    Tinariwen will be sharing Elwan on a North American tour in 2017. Check out the album’s track list and tour dates below:

    Elwan Tracklist:
    01. Tiwàyyen
    02. Sastanàqqàm
    03. Nizzagh Ijbal
    04. Hayati
    05. Ittus
    06. Ténéré Tàqqàl
    07. Imidiwàn N-Àkall-In
    08. Talyat
    09. Assàwt
    10. Arhegh Ad Annàgh
    11. Nànnuflày
    12. Intro Flute Fog Edaghan
    13. Fog Edaghàn


    Tinariwen Tour Dates:
    03/30 – Solana Beach, CA @ Belly Up Tavern
    03/31 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Fonda Theatre
    04/01 – Berkeley, CA @ The UC Theatre
    04/02 – Portland, OR @ Revolution Hall
    04/04 – Seattle, WA @ Benaroya Hall
    04/05 – Vancouver, BC @ Chan Centre for the Performing Arts
    04/07 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The State Room
    04/08 – Denver, CO @ Swallow Hill Music Association
    04/10 – Minneapolis, MN @ Cedar Cultural Center
    04/11 – Chicago, IL @ Old Town School of Folk Music
    04/12 – Toronto, ON @ Massey Hall
    04/13 – Montreal, QC @ Place des Arts
    04/14 – Boston, MA @ Royale
    04/15 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Bowl
    04/16 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Bowl
    04/18 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
    04/19 – Washington, DC @ Barns at Wolf Trap
    04/21 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Carnegie of Homestead Hall