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Review of CD by Saba

By Julius Timmerman
Posted Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Saba was born in Mogadishu in Somalia of Italian and Ethiopian parents who migrated to Italy when Saba was five years old, although they visited Ethiopia regularly. She is well known as an artist and an actress but has just turned to singing. Her musical debut is an upbeat and varied album with high production values, walking a line between African and European cultures both rhythmically and melodically. We hear traditional and modern instruments and energetic backing vocals supporting her expressive high voice on this personal journey based on her varied experiences, with subjects like immigration, family love, and refugees.

Overall the album, and indeed Saba’s voice, doesn’t have the kind of deep soul power that for example Ethiopian singer Gigi can generate. Saba’s frothiness is quite individual and likeable but ultimately is not likely to make a hugely memorable impact.

Riverboat Records/World Music Network TUGCD1047 (thru MRA)

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