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Strummer, Joe & The Mescaleros : Yalla yalla

This could have been terrible, humiliating, another crinkly faded hero grasping for past glories reborn. Instead, [B]'Yalla Yalla' [/B]is rather remarkable.

This could have been terrible, humiliating, another crinkly faded hero grasping for past glories reborn. Instead, 'Yalla Yalla' is rather remarkable. Part of the trick is that it is satisfyingly Clash-esque (shades of 'Jimmy Jazz', whispers of 'Revolution Rock') while keeping its boots

firmly

entrenched in the '90s.





Co-written with The Grid's Richard Norris, it lopes along in slow motion over pulsating electronica and tinny

percussion

- part hymn, part rap, part ambient ska. If you can imagine such a thing. It has a refined, contemplative quality, and Strummer's voice is, of course, a scratched-up, dented miracle.





You just have to wish that the album version, included here, wasn't over six minutes long D overkill by any standards - and that the chorus didn't actually say, "Yalla yalla yalla, there's

jambalaya

on the bayou".






Pretend you didn't hear that part, and you'll be alright.



April Long

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