GB 042CD GB 042CD

A kaleidoscopic career-spanning compilation from Istanbul's revered psychedelic explorers. Esteemed collaborators include Sly & Robbie, Mad Professor, Dr. Das of Asian Dub Foundation, Alexander Hacke (Einstürzende Neubauten), and more. Without a doubt one of the planet's great musical adventures. Baba Zula have been a shining beacon since 1996, bringing the West and the Orient together in a glory of Istanbul psychedelia. To celebrate those two decades of existence, XX brings together tracks from across Baba Zula's history, along with a second album of dubs created by artists like Mad Professor, Dr. Das of Asian Dub Foundation, and Dirtmusic. "We wanted to have a compilation that was a little different," explains group founder and electric saz player Osman Murat Ertel. "None of the pieces here are in their original forms. Instead, we picked remixes, re-recordings, collaborations, live tracks, all the possibilities, but none of these have been released before. And it's a mix of recording techniques -- digital, analogue, tape, mp3." Formed by Ertel and Levent Akman in 1996, Baba Zula took Turkish psychedelic pioneers of the 1960s like Moğollar as their inspiration and foundation for what they called Istanbul psychedelia, a scene that's since grown up around them. Baba Zula have played all over the world, won awards for their work in film and theater, and had their albums counted among the most prestigious ever released in Turkey. They've also built a global network of like-minded performers, experimental souls in all genres of music, working with people as varied as Turkish opera singer Semiha Berksoy, dub mixer Mad Professor, and Can drummer Jaki Liebezeit. In typically perverse and playful fashion, their biggest "hit" -- "Bir Sana Bir De Bana" ("One For You And One For Me") is here, it's not the original Baba Zula version of the song, but one by Deleyaman featuring a duet between an Armenian man and a French woman. Also included are a pair of previously unreleased live tracks. "Çöl Aslanlari" ("Desert Lions") was mixed by Einstürzende Neubauten's Alexander Hacke, while "Abdülcanbaz" is taken from a performance at the Resistance Festival in Piraeus, Greece, with Ertel's electric saz powering and pushing the group higher and higher over a swell of percussion, electric oud, effects, and vocals. They're long, mesmeric cuts, the pulsing of an ancient Turkish soul in a very modern band.