Rachid Taha

Olé, Olé [Barclay]

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A refreshing blend of modern electronic/rock and traditional Algerian music, Ole Ole successfully combines Algerian and English lyrics into a new and interesting style. "Nokta" captures the blend of modern Algerian rock at its best, while "Non Non Non" is an easily accessible anthemic piece of world music, reminiscent of Ricky Martin, with a healthy dose of electronica thrown in. An over-reliance on repetitive motifs used to heighten Taha's pleas in such tracks as "Boire" and "Comme Un Chien" stops Ole Ole from complete crossover success, however. A dose of surf rock in "Jungle Fiction" furthers Taha's range while providing a refreshing change to the common thread of dance and traditional styles. Taha's liner notes to each song (in both Algerian and English) make interesting reading, but are no less illuminating than the eclectic mix of musical and cultural influences at work throughout Ole Ole.

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