The late Yemane Ghebremichael know by his nickname Barya was one of Eritrea's favourite singers. He was exiled during the war but now teams up with the Zemen band to record this album at the Admas Studio in Asmara.
Yemane's songwriting strove to reflect what he perceived to be Eritrean experience during the Eritrean War of Independence. His songs were dotted with stories of love, journey, hope, immigration, and liberation. In 1975, he was jailed for the perceived political interpretation of one of his songs.
A few years after the declaration of the independence of Eritrea, Yemane moved to Asmara and continued to release albums that reflected the new era of hope and national prosperity, with a mixture of Eritrean and Latin melodies. He also sang about the people involved in the movement towards Eritrean independence, and the sacrifices of that movement.
Yemane Barya was also known as the 'Eritrean caretaker', due to his reputation as being of a generous, down-to-earth nature, and for sharing his place with newly arrived Eritreans. He is known for having helped many Eritreans adjust to diaspora life in Sudan and move to better places in the Middle East, America, Europe, etc. He was also reputed for his artistry and mastery of Tigrinya, the most widely used language in Eritrea.
1. Yemane Barya - NATZNET YU KIBRET (6:33)
2. Yemane Barya - MESOB ADE (6:58)
3. Yemane Barya - KULU ENTNAY N'AKI (7:59)
4. Yemane Barya - NEWRI AYKONEN FKRI (8:27)
5. Yemane Barya - AB HILMI MISAKI HADIRE (9:05)
6. Yemane Barya - AKMISKINI HAMOT (8:25)
7. Yemane Barya - FERIHEKI'YE (6:42)
8. Yemane Barya - ETZBEY ALEKU (6:26)
From the softly sensuous sounds of Natzanet, he and the band proceed through a lovely set of songs. On the more traditional side the mournful and haunting sound of the title track gives way to the bouncy style of Kulu and its faster cousin Newri. On the modern side Ab Hilmi is simply gorgeous, so to the bubbly sound of Akmiskini with Yermane's softly warbling vocal style and the lovely mix of sax and guitars they come across beautifully.