“Vurulduk Ey Halkım Unutma Bizi” by Selda - album review

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TJR says

By now in her late 20s, the Turkish folk singer Selda Bağcan had crammed much into her first 5 years as a professional musician, with a great many singles and a few German territory cassette albums already behind her. “Vurulduk Ey Halkım Unutma Bizi” was her second long-player in her native Turkey where she was now firmly established as a star in the hearts of the working class, never afraid to confront the political hot potato of the day with a critical lyric, although, as a westerner, I’ll need to take the word of commentators for it. Whilst I may be unable to understand the language, I can feel that Selda sings proudly in earnest, that she feels her subject matter with a passion and that she is often pained by some troublesome issues.

This set is consistently rewarding and reaches some terrific highs in the first half. The title-track, half-traditional / half-Selda’s, is a two-minute blast, an acoustic-folk statement-of-intent, almost coming high from a mountain in Mexico. When Selda breaks it down into a barely accompanied spoken rant by the end, I’m sitting up and taking notice already. Her band are then fully amped and electrified for “Utan, Utan” and we’re into some of that Middle Eastern Psychedelic Rock which has now become a big part of her mid-70s repertoire. It’s obvious to me right away that her musicians are excellent – focused, rhythmic and mesmerizing – and the combo with Selda’s impassioned vocal is irresistible.

Closing side 1 is a spell-binding 3-track-run which begins with “Acıyı Bal Eyledik”, another stripped-back acoustic-folk number co-written by Selda, and is followed by the excellent “Askerin Türküsü”, a breathtaking number which sounds like it could be the entertainment at some sort of medieval banquet and seems to be half-European / half-Middle-Eastern. Album highlight “Maden Dağı (Deloy, Deloy)” closes side 1 stupendously, with Selda in full-emo-throttle, tears in her eyes, as the group empathize with wavering flutes and lamenting guitars. The Maden Mountain of Diyarbakır is misty, as are her eyes at the news that her lover has been lost. The second half of this LP is nowhere near as radical, almost as if a pop concession, but is never cheesy and retains an allure with some high quality playing of some exotic sounding instruments. In this regard, Selda reminds me of Édith Piaf who could stir my soul mightily when in trad mode, but was less affecting the more contemporaneous she became. That said, Selda’s nowhere near as MOR as Édith was, and, as if underlining my point, the dynamic “Zamanı Geldi” finishes this set off brilliantly, almost Bollywood-like with its sense of drama. Selda is a proper star turn – and this album is simply a must for musical adventurers.

The Jukebox Rebel
27-Jul-2014


A1 [01:56] 8.3.png Selda - Vurulduk Ey Halkım, Unutma Bizi (Selda Bağcan, Zülfü Livaneli) Folk
A2 [03:03] 8.0.png Selda - Utan, Utan (Muhlis Akarsu) Middle Eastern
A3 [04:04] 7.0.png Selda - Karaoğlan (Mahzuni Şerif) Folk Rock / Americana
A4 [05:04] 8.4.png Selda - Acıyı Bal Eyledik (Selda Bağcan, Hasan Hüseyin) Folk
A5 [02:52] 8.6.png Selda - Askerin Türküsü (Hakkari Dolaylarından) Folk
A6 [04:36] 9.4.png Selda - Maden Dağı (Deloy, Deloy) (Anonymous) Middle Eastern
B1 [03:08] 6.0.png Selda - Maden İşçileri (Selda Bağcan, Naci Gelendost) Folk
B2 [04:49] 6.4.png Selda - Gardaşım Hasso (Selda Bağcan, Turgut Yarkent) Folk Rock / Americana
B3 [04:14] 6.5.png Selda - Bundan Sonra (Muhlis Akarsu) Middle Eastern
B4 [03:35] 6.4.png Selda - Gözden, Gezden, Arpacıktan (Selda Bağcan, Enver Gökçe) Folk
B5 [03:08] 6.1.png Selda - Eco’ya Dönder Beni (Kerkük Türküsü) Middle Eastern
B6 [03:37] 8.2.png Selda - Zamanı Geldi (Muhlis Akarsu) Middle Eastern




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