• Record Label: Wedge
  • Release Date: May 19, 2023

Universal acclaim - based on 8 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 0 out of 8
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  1. Jun 13, 2023
    Spread out across three continents, the Amatssou team has nonetheless created a tight and exciting package of assouf (the term Tinariwen often uses for their music, translating to “nostalgia”). Tinariwen link Nashville and North Africa in ways well suited to a definition of outlaw country that includes their rebellious rock.
  2. The Wire
    Sep 6, 2023
    Tasteful pedal steel from Lanois gives a gentle country inflection to cuts like “Arajghiyine” – there’s a neat dovetailing here between two desert musics – but Tinariwen’s refined nocturnal heaviness reigns unchallenged. [Oct 2023, p.60]
  3. Jun 9, 2023
    Like all Tinariwen releases, Amatssou is compelling and strange. They are a musical entity like no other, translating the essence of their culture through creative exploration and complementary collaborations, yet always attuned to their inner compass.
  4. May 18, 2023
    There’s only one moment when the production distracts from the players, a brief yet clunky guitar overdub on Arajghiyine. Listeners who love a wide soundstage, however, with well-separated guitars coming at you from all angles, will be in heaven. Thankfully, the guests shun the spotlight, leaving Ibrahim, Alhassane Ag Touhami and Abdallah Ag Alhousseyni to concentrate on that elusive sound, the guitars cleaner and crisper than those that introduced Tinariwen to the world 20 years ago. [Jun 2023, p.82]
  5. May 18, 2023
    Lanois, along with other western guests, fits organically into Tinariwen's desert blues. The collaborations help even the most furious lyrics slip down nicely. [Jun 2023, p.30]
  6. May 18, 2023
    “Tinde,” at the end, floats a woman’s ululating tones over bare, echoing percussion. But mostly, Amatssou sounds exactly like you expect Tinariwen to sound, like its drifting to you over acres of sand, like it’s moving your bare feet to dance, and that is a very good thing.
  7. May 18, 2023
    On Amatssou, Tinariwen adds to their amazing range and melodic flexibilities through collaboration, allowing some of their biggest admirers into their majestic, fully realized world.
  8. May 18, 2023
    They sound even more urgent now and, of course, Lanois’s production values have further enhanced the band’s captivating sound.

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