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Tinariwen Imidwan.jpeg
Studio album by Tinariwen
Released June 29, 2009
Genre Tishoumaren, Blues, Folk, World
Label Independiente
Tinariwen chronology
Aman Iman
(2007)Aman Iman2007
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars [1]
PopMatters 8/10 stars [2]
Pitchfork Media (7.6/10) [3]
Rockfeedback 3/5 stars [4]
The Guardian 4/5 stars [5]
SPIN Magazine 8/10 stars[6]

Imidiwan: Companions, released 29 June 2009, is the fourth studio album by Tinariwen. The album saw the band reunite with Jean-Paul Romann, the producer of their 2001 album The Radio Tisdas Sessions.[7] Some editions of the album include a DVD featuring a 30-minute documentary about the band.[1]


Joe Tangari of Pitchfork discussed how the band experienced much of the world outside the desert and how it has influenced the new direction of this album.[8] He said "lyrically the songs, sung in Tamashek, visit themes of liberation and cultural-historical pride".[8] Later he stated that it contains assuf "an untranslatable word with implications of homesickness, loneliness, and sadness; it also refers to the nighttime world beyond the light of the campfire.[8]"

Critical reception[edit]

The album received generally positive reviews. The Guardian gave the album 4 out of 5 stars, saying "Tinariwen just keep on keepin' on, relentless and brilliant as the Saharan sun."[5] The Daily Telegraph also gave the album 4 stars, saying that the band are "...the nearest thing the modern world provides to a real blues feel." [9]

Imidiwan also won the 2009 Uncut Music Award for being "the most inspiring and richly rewarding album of the last 12 months".[10]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Imidiwan Afrik Tendam" 3:32
2. "Lulla" 3:49
3. "Tenhert" 5:28
4. "Enseqi Ehad Didagh" 5:40
5. "Tahult In" 4:10
6. "Tamudjeras Assis" 4:51
7. "Intitlayaghen" 4:49
8. "Imazaghen N Adagh" 3:46
9. "Tenalle Chegret" 5:43
10. "Kel Tamashek" 3:16
11. "Assuf Ag Assuf" 4:54
12. "Chabiba" 3:21
13. "Ere Tasfata Adounia" 4:53
14. "Desert Wind" 4:19

Note: "Desert Wind," an instrumental, was included as a bonus track in some editions of the album.


  1. ^ a b Imidiwan at AllMusic
  2. ^ PopMatters review
  3. ^ Pitchfork review
  4. ^ Rockfeedback review
  5. ^ a b Thomson, Graeme (2009-06-14). "World music review: Tinariwen, Imidiwan". The Guardian. London. 
  6. ^ "SPIN Magazine review". 
  7. ^ "Music - Review of Tinariwen - Imidiwan: Companions". BBC. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 
  8. ^ a b c Tangari, Joe. "Pitchfork Overview". Pitchfork. Retrieved February 21, 2016. 
  9. ^ Hudson, Mark (2009-06-25). "Tinariwen: Imidiwan Companions, CD review". The Daily Telegraph. London. 
  10. ^ "Saharan musicians win Uncut award". BBC News. 2009-11-09.