Ethiopian Urban Modern Music Vol. 4
A stunning set of vocal recordings by Tlahoun Gèssèssè, one of the most important singers during the golden age of Ethiopian music, caught here on a set of sides that sadly saw that period coming to an end! The tracks on the set are mostly from the early 70s, a time that saw great political changes in Ethiopia and tremendous censorship and restrictions on cultural production. Gèssèssè’s vocals during this time are perhaps even more melancholy and heartfelt than before, and he’s working here on a number of sides with the legendary Mulatu, with arrangements that have a angular, almost modernist edge. Despite the language barriers that keep us from understanding what Gèssèssè’s singing about, there’s an incredibly evocative quality to the work that transcends time and place.