“Impressive band […] A powerful seven-piece from Palencia, a neglected region of northern Spain. They are feisty and compelling on stage […] I really admire their social engagement and El Naán are also a tour de force on stage.” Simon Broughton, Songlines #130.
“Fabulous new album by El Naán. One of my favourite albums“. Rafael Mieses, Santo Domingo national radio
“It is wonderful […] So intensive, so lush, so evocative is the album by El Naán. […] They fascinanted us with their first album, De Babel a Ítaca, they fascinated us with their second album, Código de Barros, and they have captivated us with this third album called La Danza de las Semillas. […] A totally new music. […] Fantastic album that could be one of the albums of the year, although to venture that is very adventurous, as there are still 11 months lefts, but it is true that the high level that this album distils, La Danza de las Semillas by El Naán is really difficult to overtake. […] We have luckily had the chance to attend several times the live show by El Naán, is one of the most suggestive and intensive to experience.” Fernando Íñiguez, Tarataña, Radio 3-RNE
“I would dare to say that it there is almost no one else doing what El Naán is doing with the traditional music. They had a very interesting first album and with this second one, Código de Barros, I think they have that mixture of what we are searching for, a term that we really like, roots and evolution. You see the roots over there but also you have those rhythms that they call “round-trip”, from Latin America and even from Arabic rhythms… I think they are nowadays one of the most interesting musical proposals in Spain, for sure […] It is not only a musical project, I think it is a philosophy and a lifestyle, they are over there at the Cerrato (a region in Castilla y León), living the traditions, bringing them back to life, they make the rehearsals over there, and all that is felt at the live show. For me it is breathtaking.” César Martín, organizer of Demanda Folk festival.
“A band that deserves to be listened live… If you are around, don´t doubt about going to the concert because it will worth it, you’ll see what can be done with a lot of love and soul“. Pilar Sampietro, Mediterráneo, Radio 3-Spanish National Radio, some hours before the concert of presentation in Madrid of the album Código de Barros en Madrid (Galileo Galilei concert hall, 7/9/2014)
“One of the big things that have happened to the Spanish root music is the burst in of El Naán… We saw them live some days ago and we are still fascinated”. Fernando Íñiguez, Tarataña-Radio 3, about the album Código de Barros
“This critic never tires of well-done musical tours of nations, regions or cultures, and they are a particular strength of the ARC label. This “bar code” project by producer El Naán is somewhat unique in being not only a geographical, but a historical tour of the Iberian Peninsula as well. The release is a celebration of the musical melting pot that Spain has been over the centuries. […] This sounds like a big challenge of a project. It is, but it works and works well.” Arthur Shuey, EEUU. World Music Central
“They have enthralled absolutely everyone that have seen them […] Their live show is explosive, is wonderful.” Sonia Frías, Entre Lares, Radio Círculo.
From Palencia, in the heart of Castile y León (Spain), the septet El Naán creates their own compositions inspired by their land, a land trodden by Sephardics, Arabs, Berbers, Celts, Iberians, Romans and ancient people… of extreme weather, hardly depopulated, on a landscape of houses of mud melting on the soil since their inhabitants moved to the city decades ago.
But El Naán are tireless travellers, that have crossed Latin America and Africa in circus caravans and wanderings without prefixed destiny, and have share the roof with indigenous, learning their struggles on first-hand and integrating them on the cosmogony of their music, that is both a celebration of being together, of beauty and of legends and a cry for human rights related to food sovereignty, women issues, economic exile and historical memory.
3rd album: La Danza de las Semillas
After De Babel a Ítaca (self production, 2012) and Código de Barros (ARC Music, 2014), their third album, La Danza de las Semillas, is a self production (January 3rd, 2018).
It has been funded by a crowdfunding project that raised the requested amount, 6000 euros, in less than 4 days.
Listen the album at Bandcamp
At the end of the period of 40 days they got 14.460 € from 471 sponsors. That success will allow them to develop other two objectives:
- To film 2 videoclips: one of them in collaboration with the Asociación para la Recuperación de la Memoria Histórica, association for the recovery of the historical memory, made by descendants of victims of the Francoism, workers, teachers, free-thinkers… whose human remains are still unrecovered and lost in forgotten mass graves after being executed on the ditches of the outskirts. These people are still seeking for those remains in order to make them a proper burial, with the song ¿Dónde pongo las flores? (Where shall I put the flowers?); the other will make visible the voices of peasant culture, shepherds, farmers, activists for food sovereignty and associations of local consumption, with the song La Danza de los Cedazos (the dance of the sieves).
- To have a proper technical infrastructure for the Festival de la Tierra y la Soberanía Alimentaria (festival of the land and the food sovereignty), a meeting of music groups, artists, activists and peasant organizations, to be held next Spring in Tabanera de Cerrato, the location of El Naán and of the Universidad Rural del Cerrato.
La Danza de las Semillas will be premiered on stage in Palencia on day 13th of April, after the returning of the group from Senegal, were they’ll be touring with a circus project from beginning of February.
Crowdfunding results website
The artistic proposal
Their show combines traditional music, with codes and sounds recognizable by the audience, and other sounds and rhythms that have influenced the Castilian and Spanish culture, like the “round trip” rhythms that went and came from the Americas, and also the Arab and Oriental sounds. All this is set in a very beautiful staging, including theatrical elements, with interspersed performances of a rhapsode singing to the Muses and the pleasures of life; and visual elements, video-art projections…
Carlos Herrero: voice, bouzouki, Cuban tres | Héctor Castrillejo: lyrics, bard, videocreator | César Díez: electric bass | María Alba: second voice, percussion | Adal Pumarabín: percussion | Javier Mediavilla: electric guitar | César Tejero: sax.
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