January 24, 1994 12:00 PM

Djur Djura

Djura, lead singer of the French/ Algerian band Djur Djura, was an outcast from the moment she was born (her mother, distraught because she wasn’t a boy, refused to feed or care for her). Her struggle to survive and express the plight of Berber women provides the subject matter for this passionate collection of songs.

The music is deceptively sweet and childlike, employing the folkloric poetry and entrancing minor-key melodies of Berber tradition. Djura describes her mission as “sing[ing] aloud what our mothers hummed under their breath,” and although the lyrics are subversive, the sounds she creates are filled with gentle rhythms, lush choral interplay and subtle shadings. This is a music of longing and sadness—and music that Djura is barred from performing in Algeria. (Luaka Bop)

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