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Album Review

Created for dancers, these pieces have a wonderful Turkish elegance. Mercan Dede, who moved from Turkey to Canada, uses musicians from both countries to create his sound, which manages to be spacious and airy without ever floating away. Spoken word samples add to the atmosphere, as on the opening of "Semaname," where a rhythm that could almost be Native American appears under a wispy flute line; although it never completely develops as a piece of music, there's still something lovely about it. Like many of the pieces here, the rhythm is more important than the melody; on "Hayalname," for example, there are layers of polyrhythms throughout the piece. Dede understands Turkish music, and doesn't go for easy, flashy sounds. Instead, he subtly mixes melodies with programmed beats on "Sahname" or the antiphonal phrasing between instruments over brooding synth tones at the opening of "Vefaname." By its very nature, this is different to Dede's other albums, where the emphasis is on melody. But, listened to on its own terms, this is a great success.


Born: 1966 in Bursa, Turkey

Genre: World

Years Active: '00s

Guided by Sufi principles of balance and a love for both ancient and modern musics, Mercan Dede is among Turkey's most prominent musical exports. Respected by electronic and traditional music communities alike, Dede has a singular presence in world music. Having released over 100 singles under nine different names (Arkin Allen, Poundmaker, Blueman, etc.), Dede boasts an impressive discography, covering enormous stylistic territory. Born in a poor Turkish village in the '70s, Mercan was steeped in...
Full Bio
Seyahatname, Mercan Dede
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: World, Music, Arabic
  • Released: Jan 17, 2001

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