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  • Writer's pictureJoel Dwek & Danny Wiser

200WorldAlbums - Taking stock...

As we reach our 200th nation from which we have reviewed an album, we take a moment to pause and look at where we have got to thus far.

When we started our descent into insanity, taking on the mission to search for and write about an album from each nation back in 2020, we had no idea where it would take us or where this project would end up. The only thing we hoped to do was document our findings for ourselves and educate ourselves about the different cultures this endlessly diverse and fascinating world has to offer. We always knew we wanted to end the project with a list of our 200 favourite albums that we had listened to once we had completed our review of an album from our 200th country or territory. However, as the project, in its typical fashion, continued to spiral wildly out of control, with us listening to and discovering records at a faster rate than anyone could reasonably churn out top quality album reviews, we realised we had to have a change of tack.

Since the original ambition of our endeavours has been fulfilled, in finding and reviewing at least one album from each nation (we’ll pretend that our Nauruan EP counts, for now) we have decided to take stock and instead provide a snapshot of where we stand today. Though the list will evolve as we have many more albums to come, at this point, these are our favourite album that we have reviewed on the site from each country. The Beatles and Stevie Wonder aside, you may spot that some global music powerhouses are missing, such as ABBA and Bob Marley; that is not because we think they are unworthy of inclusion but rather we wanted to shine a light on musicians whose work we were less familiar with before this journey begun.

Buoyed by the incredible response we have had from people across the planet, we realised that we have accidentally tapped into something rather special and as such have exciting plans ahead. Not only will we continue interviewing musicians from across the world, each with their own nuanced perspective and stance on things that we can all learn from, we will also soon be launching our ‘Country In Focus’ series, in which we will be doing a deep-dive into the music culture of certain nations, exploring a whole host of albums that represent the diversity of many of the countries’ music that we have only been to scratch the surface of thus far.

You might say the project is done and that we should pack up our bags and call it a day…Yet, whether it be our loyal readership from all four corners of the world or the many musicians from each continent who have reached out in support of our project, we have been overwhelmed by how much positive feedback we have received and the connections we have made along the way and as such have no plans of stopping now. We have realised that in bringing to the fore the music of each nation, in so doing we are celebrating each people group, taking the narrative away from politicians who often dictate the headlines and reputation a country may have. Over the course of this journey we have realised how much we have in common with all of humankind, regardless of nationality, and yet at the same have so many differences that make each culture special and unique that deserve their moment in the sun. As the old Native American adage goes “we all come from the same root but the leaves are all different”.

1. Afghanistan The Ghost You Love Most by Qais Essar

2. Albania Echoes From Iliria by Simaku

3. Algeria Je suis africain by Rachid Taha

4. Andorra Nua by Marta Roure

5. Angola Pretaluz by Waldemar Bastos

6. Antigua and Barbuda Ghetto Vibes by King Short Shirt

7. Argentina Clics Modernos by Charly Garcia

8. Armenia Mubla by Nemra

9. Australia Gurrumul by Gurrumul

10. Austria The Princess Pts 1 & 2 by Parov Stelar

11. Azerbaijan Street Bangerz Volume 8 by Akshin Alizadeh

12. Bahrain Armor by Ala Ghawas

13. Bangladesh Trimatrik by Aurthohin

14. Barbados 1 on 1 by Rupee

15. Belarus - Try Carapachi by N.R.M.

16. Belgium - Man Bites Harmonica by Toots Thielemans

17. Belize - Wátina by Andy Palacio/Garifuna Collective

18. Benin - Aye by Angélique Kidjo

19. Bhutan Rain of Blessings: Varja Chants by Lama Gyurme and Jean-Philippe Rykiel

20. Bolivia - Tu Semilla by Emma, César & Jaime Junaro

21. Bosnia and Herzegovina Wild Wild East by Dubioza Kolektiv

22. Botswana - Motoko by Sereetsi & The Natives

23. Brazil Getz/Gilberto by Stan Getz & João Gilberto

24. Brunei - LUNA by Perfect Scums

25. Bulgaria B.T.R. '97 by B.T.R

26. Burkina Faso - Victor Démé by Victor Démé

27. Burundi - Les Maitres-Tambours du Burundi by The Drummers of Burundi

28. Cabo Verde - Miss Perfumado by Cesaria Évora

29. Cambodia Reatrei Nov Hong Kong, Vol. 58 by Sinn Sisamouth (Compilation due to context)

30. Cameroon - Get On Board by Emmanuel Pi Djob

31. Canada - You Want It Darker by Leanord Cohen

32. Central African Republic Sanza Soul by Laetitia Zonzambé

33. Chad - Chili Houritiki by Mounira Mitchala

34. Chile Manifesto by Victor Jara

35. China Black Panther by Hei Bao

36. Colombia Amanecer by Bomba Estéreo

37. Comoros - Wassi Wassi by Maalesh

38. Congo, Democratic Republic of the Emotion by Papa Wemba

39. Congo, Republic of the - Bakolo Mboka by Les Bantous de la Capitale

40. Costa Rica - Sabor En Un Tiempo Cruel by Ojo De Buey

41. Côte d’Ivoire Djekpa La You by Dobet Gnahore

42. Croatia Pop by Tihomir Pop Asanović

43. Cuba Beautiful by Cándido

44. Cyprus - Tha Frygo Me Tous Filous Mou Gia Kairo by Konstantina

45. Czech Republic - Objects of Desire and Other Complications by Monkey Business

46. Denmark Det er Mig der Holder Træerne Sammen by Under Byen

47. Djibouti - The Dancing Devils of Djibouti by Groupe RTD

48. Dominica - Michele Henderson by Michele Henderson

49. Dominican Republic - Suenos y Pesadillas del Tercer Mundo by Toque Profundo

50. Ecuador IV by Antonio Vergara

51. Egypt - Resala Ela Magles El Amn by Ramy Essam

52. El Salvador Ay Mi Pueblo by Hermanos Flores

53. Equatorial Guinea - Colores De Amor by Las Hijas Del Sol

54. Eritrea Numey by Faytinga

55. Estonia - Mustale Merele by Sopruse Puiestee

56. eSwatini Swazi Soul by Bholoja

57. Ethiopia Soul of Addis by Mahmoud Ahmed

58. Fiji Kavatime by The Kavaholics

59. Finland Jurahevin Kuninkaat by Hevisaurus

60. France La Bohème - Charles Aznavour

61. Gabon - Patience Dabany by Patience Dabany

62. Georgia - In Vino Veritas by Mgzavrebi

63. Germany - The Man-Machine by Kraftwerk

64. Ghana - All In 1 Love by Mohammed Alidu

65. Greece - Anástasis: a Journey Through Old Greek Music - Katerina Papadopoulou

66. Grenada Lovely Day by David Emmanuel

67. Guatemala - Mil Palabras Con Sus Dientes by Bohemia Suburbana

68. Guinea - Objectif Perfection by Balla et ses Balladins

69. Guinea-BissauAr Puro by Super Mama Djombo

70. Guyana – Moon Over Me by Aubrey Cummings

71. Haiti HaitiaNola by Lakou Mizik

72. Honduras Hablo Español by Polache

73. Hungary Klezmer by Budapest Bár

74. Iceland - Ágætis Byrjun by Sigur Rós

75. India - Item by Euphoria

76. Indonesia - Los Skut Leboys by Sore

77. Iran Enlighten the Night by Mahsa Vahdat

78. Iraq - Tatazakarein by UTN1

79. Ireland Let The People Sing by The Wolfe Tones

80. Israel Badeshe Etzel Avigdor by Arik Einstein/Miki Gavrielov

81. Italy - Oro, Incenso e Birra by Zucchero

82. JamaicaFunky Kingston by Toots & The Maytals

83. Japan - Japan - Echoes of Japan by Minyo Crusaders

84. JordanArabic Rocks by Jadal

85. Kazakhstan iD by Dimash Kudaibergen

86. Kenya - Makosa by Murfy's Flaw

87. Kiribati - Zero by Elijah L

88. Kosovo - Merrma Shiun E Prishtines by Sabri Fejzullahu

89. Kuwait - Hi Fear, Lo Love by Zahed Sultan

90. Kyrgyzstan - Vne zony dostupa by Gorod 312

91. Laos - Miracle by JoJo Miracle

92. Latvia - Lai Masina Rotajas! by Auli/Tautumeitas

93. Lebanon - Ibn El Leil by Mashrou' Leila

94. Lesotho - Dreams Do Come True by Sankomota

95. Liberia - Take A Look Outside by Kapingbdi

96. Libya - Awedny by Ahmed Fakroun

97. Liechtenstein - Al Walser Comes 2 Life by Al Walser

98. Lithuania - Laukinis Suo Dingo by Alina Orlova

99. Luxembourg - Klasseklon - Serge Tonnar & Legotrip

100. Madagascar - Madagascar All Stars by Erick Manana, Fenoamby, Justin Vali, Régis Gizavo, Dama, Ricky

101. Malawi - Kalilima by Faith Mussa

102. Malaysia - C.I.N.T.A by Alleycats

103. Maldives ­- Sissuvaali by Faruma Boduberu Group

104. Mali - Les Ambassadeurs Internationaux by Les Ambassadeurs

105 Malta Minutes of a Lifetime by Airport Impressions

106. Marshall Islands - BIJICAL by Les, Ned & Sypher Anjolok

107. Mauritania - Arbina by Noura Mint Seymali

108. Mauritius - Cassiya II by Cassiya

109. Mexico - El Nervio Del Volcán by Caifanes

110. Micronesia, Federated States of Get It On by Ozeky

111. Moldova - Oglinda by Trigon

112. Monaco - Il n'y a Plus Rien by Leo Ferré

113. Mongolia - Baigalaas Irsen Ohin by Tigerfish

114. Montenegro - Eh Kad Bi Ti by Sako Polumenta

115. Morocco - Nayda! by Bab L'Bluz

116. Mozambique - Eparaka by Deltino Guerrero

117. Myanmar (Burma) - Khanah Lay Miaa by Lay Phyu

118. Namibia - Black Colonialists by Black Vulcanite

119. Nauru - Trials Of Your Faith by Skylla (EP)

120. Nepal - Grahan by Dibesh Pokharel

121. Netherlands - Moontan by Golden Earring

122. New Zealand - Based On A True Story by Fat Freddy's Drop

123. Nicaragua - Tuyo Lo Que Soy by Salvador Cardenal Barquero

124. Niger - Nomad by Bombino

125. Nigeria - Expensive Shit by Fela Kuti

126. North Korea - Moranbong Band by Moranbong Band

127. North Macedonia ­- King Ferus by Ferus Mustafov

128. Norway - Gula Gula by Mari Boine

129. Oman - Ayyar by Salah Al Zadjali

130. Pakistan - Mustt Mustt by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

131. Palau - TheRock, Vol. 1 by BfolkMuzik680

132. Palestine - Dabke on the Moon by DAM

133. Panama - Buscando America by Rubén Blades

134. Papua New Guinea - Amette by George Telek

135. Paraguay - Guantanamera by Los Tres Paraguayos

136. Peru - Susana Baca by Susana Baca

137. Philippines - Diwa by Juan Karlos

138. Poland - Beluga Trigga & Master Stone's Spiritual Surfing by Beluga Stone

139. Portugal - Movimento Perpétuo by Carlos Paredes

140. Puerto Rico - Asalto Navideño by Willie Colón & Hector Lavoe

141. Qatar - Enta Eshq by Fahad Al Kubaisi

142. Romania - Iag Bari by Fanfare Ciocărlia

143. Russia - We Will Never Die by Yat-Kha

144. Rwanda - John Wizards by John Wizards

145. Saint Kitts and Nevis - I Can Assure You by Odisi Band

146. Saint Lucia - Beyond by Ronald 'Boo' Hinkson

147. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Kevin Lyttle by Kevin Lyttle

148. Samoa - Welcome to Samoa by The Five Stars

149. San Marino - Avantgarde by Miodio

150. São Tomé and Príncipe - Yellow by Calema

151. Saudi Arabia - Dhil-un Taht Shajarat Al-Zaqum by MSYLMA

152. Senegal - Immigrés by Youssou N'Dour

153. Serbia - The Last Balkan Tango by Boris Kovac

154. Seychelles - Black Queen by Dezil'

155. Sierra Leone - Dead Men Don't Smoke Marijuana by S.E. Rogie

156. Singapore - Soul Detergent by The Stoned Revivals

157. Slovakia - Den Medzi Nedelou A Pondelkom by Peha

158. Slovenia Bring Back My Soul by JK Soul

159. Solomon Islands - Iu Mi Flow by Sharzy

160. Somalia - The Journey by Maryam Mursal

161. Somaliland - Faransiskiyo Somaliland by Sahra Halgan Trio

162. South Africa - When You Come Back by Vusi Mahlasela

163. South Korea - Now by Kim Jung Mi

164. South Sudan The Key by Emmanuel Jal

165. Spain - El Momento by Nacha Pop

166. Sri Lanka - Neththara by Bathiya & Santhush

167. Sudan - Ya Dunya by Sharhabil Ahmed

168. Suriname - Akoeba by Happy Boys

169. Sweden - Prequelle by Ghost

170. Switzerland Aliento by Danit

171. Syria Wenu Wenu by Omar Souleyman

172. Taiwan - Town by The Fur.

173. Tajikistan - Lalaiki Pamir by Oleg Fesov

174. Tanzania - Songs for the Poor Man by Remmy Ongala

175. Thailand - HUMAN by Potato

176. The Bahamas Exuma, The Obeah Man by Exuma

177. The Gambia - Fasiya by Sona Jobarteh

178. Timor-Leste - Jina Ko Jina Ana by Tonny Pareira/Elder D. Araujo

179. Togo - Otodi by Vaudou Game

180. Tonga - You Make Me Believe by Joel Havea

181. Trinidad and Tobago - Monk Evolution by Machel Montano

182. Tunisia - The Astounding Eyes of Rita by Anouar Brahem

183. Turkey - On by Altin Gun

184. Turkmenistan Gunesh by The Gunesh Ensemble

185. Tuvalu - Te Masina Ite Po by Magic Bobo ft DJ Toa

186. Uganda - Exile by Geoffrey Oryema

187. Ukraine - Trans Balkan Express by OMFO

188. United Arab Emirates - Matredny Hdood by Mehdad Hamad

189. United Kingdom Abbey Road by The Beatles

190. United States Innervisions by Stevie Wonder

191. Uruguay - A Contraluz by La Vela Puerca

192. Uzbekistan - Infinite Rhythm by Abbos Kosimov

193. Vanuatu - Live at Banban by Banban Bamboo Band

194. Vatican City - Missa Papae Marcelli by Coro della Cappella Sistina

195. Venezuela - Repeat After Me by Los Amigos Invisibles

196. Vietnam - Hoa Am Xura by Saigon Soul Revival

197. Western Sahara Soutak by Aziza Brahim

198. Yemen - Akher El Akhbar by Ahmed Fathi

199. Zambia - The Return by Sampa The Great

200. Zimbabwe - Ammartia by Ammara Brown

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