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The Tunisian producer shares the first video from his debut album

Usually working behind the scenes producing for bands such as Kel Assouf and Bargou 08, Sofyann Ben Youssef will present the first record from his new Ammar 808 project in June 2018. Maghreb United features three vocalists; Mehdi Nassouli of Morocco, Sofiane Saidi from Algeria and Tunisian Cheb Hassen Tej. The traditional North African singers perform songs from Gnawa, Targ and Raï histories while electronically reinvented with Youssef's TR-808.

“In the past the Maghreb was one huge region, yet very diverse within its borders,” says Youssef, speaking about the inspiration behind the album. “But today, the world keeps every person separated. The album isn’t so much about a united Maghrebi region, but how we can connect while observing our differences – and using them to unify as humans.”

Ammar 808 will start a European tour at Rewire festival on 6 April 2018. Maghreb United is released by Glitterbeat.

Watch a solo drum performance by Ikuro Takahashi

In February 2010, Japanese percussionist Ikuro Takahashi performed at Akebono Art and Community Centre in Sapporo, capital city of Japan’s northernmost main island Hokkaido. Film maker Mikio Saito was there to capture it