Wallahi Le Zein! on Mississippi Records

Various - Wallahi Le Zein!


  • £23.99

Originally released as a double-CD in 2010 on Latitude Records, Wallahi Le Zein! has persisted as a highly sought-after cult classic, a raw and unfiltered collection of the underground psychedelic guitar music scene from the Islamic Republic of Mauritania. 

Now available on vinyl for the first time, this LP is intended as an immersive entry into this rarely-heard and utterly unique music: gnarled and virtuosic electric guitars that weave hypnotically throughout melismatic sung poetry and exclamations, pulsing hand drums, party chatter, buzzing rigged desert sound systems, and all manner of the ambient sounds of Nouakchott wedded to over-saturated cassette in all its swirling, breathing, psychedelic glory. Operating entirely outside of any local recording industry, these songs were collected from bootleg tape stalls, wedding souvenirs, and networks of musicians, expertly curated, researched and produced by Matthew Lavoie. 

Drawing from the deep well of Mauritanian classical music, the gamut of musical modes and the tidinitt lute repertoire are transposed to the electric guitar - often with frets removed or additional frets installed, “heavy metal” distortion pedals and phasers built into guitar bodies, blurring the lines between Haratine and Beydane musical cultures, the ancient and the futuristic. At times transcendent and transfixing, and conversely a furious and cascading intensity that commands jaw-dropping attention. 

"This is the first curated collection of unfiltered Mauritanian guitar music ever, and I'm glad it's been introduced with such thoroughness and care" - Pitchfork 


  1. Kebrou - Banjey ‘Boogie’ 
  2. Ateg ould Syed - l’Ensijab 
  3. Jeich ould Chighaly - Wezin 
  4. Kebrou - Banjey 
  5. Deye ould Amartichitt - Paris 
  6. Mohammed Guitar - Banjey & Medh 
  7. Baba ould Hembara & Mama Mint Hembara - Moulana, laa Moulana 
  8. Luleide ould Dendenni - Wezin 
  9. Mohammed Guitar & Sbeyniat - Gelbi Vatimetou 
  10. Mohammed Cheikh ould Syed - El Horr & az-Zrag 
  11. Kweli ould Seyyid & Klayhid ould Meylid – Wezin 


  • US import 
  • Pressed on 160g vinyl 
  • Housed in two spot colour reverse-board jacket 
  • Includes 8-page full-sized 12" booklet with extensive notes and photos, and a history of Mauritanian guitar playing 


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