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AY 029CD AY 029CD

Essay Recordings welcomes the return of Turkish psychedelic rockers BaBa ZuLa. For their latest masterpiece, they have brought on board some truly inspirational artists such as Asian Dub Foundation co-founder Dr. Das, nu-jazz mastermind Bugge Wesseltoft and other magnificent guest musicians including Titi Robin, Alcalica, Serra Yilma and Dem Yildiz. On Gecekondu, BaBa ZuLa founder Murat Ertel (wooden spoons, percussion, machines and toys) and Levent Akmann (saz and other stringed instruments, vocals, oscillator, Theremin) are accompanied by members of their touring band Cosar Kamci (percussion, darbuka) and Elene Hristova (vocals). This Istanbul-based group is the face of modern Turkish music, blending the sounds of electric saz, wooden spoons, percussion, and ancient shamanistic tradition, and mixing them up with '60s psychedelia, electronica and dub. The result is a contemporary, urban psychedelic folk sound that is both rooted in tradition and also boasts a uniquely contemporary Turkish underground sound. Gecekondu takes its name from the Turkish word for a neighborhood constructed without planning permission -- a kind of squatters' district that has become part and parcel of Istanbul's urban fabric. Millions of people now live semi-legally in such areas on the outskirts of the city, with the authorities turning a blind eye. They built their "gecekondus" -- literally "overnight constructions" -- under cover of darkness and, by the break of dawn, they had become part of the city map. These little-regarded neighborhoods, which have grown successively, are often seen as lacking all aesthetic beauty. For the most part, they are left to their own devices, and have their own specific problems and unique form of chaos.