Simin Tander: Wagma (2011)
Simin Tander is a polyglot German-Afghan singer who combines the fierce creativity of Meredith Monk with the jazz savvy of Gretchen Parlato. She has surrounded herself with a like-minded trio that is willing to forge in whatever direction she desires, with music and singing full of wordless howls, purrs, and calls. This is multicultural music with a German edge and the rugged and untamed spirit of Afghanistan.
"Becoming" is a composition in English that begins like Thelonious Monk meeting Edith Piaf for an absinthe parfait and a cool glass of Château d'Yquem. There are frank elements of hip-hop sprinkled with Tander's assertive vocalizations. Pianist Jeroen van Vliet echoes John Escreet's angular stance while never losing the swing. Tander's lyrics are of a probing conscience looking for release.
Personnel: Simin Tander: vocals; Jeroen van Vliet: piano and electronics; Etienne Nillesen: drums; Cord Heineking: bass.
Record Label: Neuklang Records