Mdou Moctar has released Niger EP Vol. 1, a collection of tracks featuring alternate versions of ‘Chismiten’ and ‘Imouhar’ as well as live takes of four songs recorded in Niger between 2017 and 2020. You can check it out below.
Moctar released his latest album, Afrique Victime, via Matador last year. “In 2021, we started the Mdou Moctar mixtape series,” producer and bassist Mikey Coltun explained in a press release. “These releases compiled field recordings, cellphone voice memos, interview clips, conversations captured in the tour van, and blown-out board recordings from shows all over the world. As a continuation of those mixtapes, we present the Niger EPs, which examine the roots of the Mdou Moctar band.”
“Early Mdou recordings were contained on cassettes, though the humble tape was soon replaced by the quick and easy facility of cellphone technology,” Coltun continued. “Long bus rides are common in West Africa. On one of these rides, you might be seated next to a stranger and ask, “What are you listening to?” Then a song exchange would begin over Bluetooth. This is a very real way artists found their music distributed far from home. In that vein, the Niger EP series features solely recordings taped in Mdou Moctar’s home country of Niger. Volume 1 begin the series with a mix of recordings from 2017-2020, documenting the band at weddings, picnics, rehearsals, and even impromptu house concerts. A must have for any Mdou Moctar fan!”