Exposé Online banner

Banabila / Saka — 1993
(Steamin’Soundworks, 1993/2018, DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2018-09-26

1993 Cover art

At Peter Gabriel’s UK Womad Festival in 1992 Michel Banabila and Yaşar Saka performed together as an “East Meets West” performance. They then went on to record and release two albums. Because of the ageless nature of their music, Steamin’ Soundworks decided to remaster and reissue selections from both albums this past June as 1993. Yaşar Saka is a Turkish multi-instrumentalist who has studied music technology; Michel Banabila is a Dutch composer who entered the scene in the early 80s performing on electronics, acoustic instruments, found objects, field recordings, and vocal snippets from radio, TV, and the internet. So what we have on 1993 is a balance between experimental and ethnic music that works extremely well. In addition to Michel Banabila (melodica, piano, voice, and sampler) and Yaşar Saka (kawal, oud, and saz), guest musicians join on various tracks: Nahim Avci (cura, saz, and kemane), Oscar Peterse (wah wah), Age Kat (guitar), Machteld Kerkmeester (harp), Marleen Knap (violin), and Adri Hilhorst (double bass). Most of the seventeen instrumentals are composed by Michel, along with five joint compositions, and Banbila’s arrangement of a Sephardic traditional tune on the opening track "Yo Era Ninya De Kaza Alta." These seventeen timeless tunes merge ethnic, rock, and ambient music into something that defies classification. There are various reference points that come to mind, along with some tracks evoking visual pictures. For example, “Nightmirror” with its dark ambience and breathy flute evokes images of a dark caravan, as well as the lovely “Travel.” Then there is “Celebration” with digital vibes and an ethnic rhythm much like Peter Gabriel’s “Rhythm of the Heat.” Some of the tracks have a jazzy bent, while others tend to the cinematic, cabaret, or café music. The one track that really resonated with me is the exquisite “Zero,” a beautiful piano and synth track that shows a strong Krautrock influence from Neu 75! 1993 is quite a remarkable compilation album and sure to please many of our readers.


Filed under: Reissues, 2018 releases, 1993 recordings

Related artist(s): Michel Banabila

More info
http://banabila.bandcamp.com/album/1993

Latest news

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Pelt - Técheöd – Here we have three ambient tracks from a not-so-dark trio on the indie VHF label. According to the label website, the title of this album is pronounced "Tay-hoood," but I'm still not certain what...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues