Album: Sezen Aksu, Optum (World Village)

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The Independent Culture

On Thursday night, London's Royal Albert Hall will be packed out for the singer dubbed the "Turkish Madonna".

And, indeed, Aksu does rather look like her, with a similarly compelling sound. But this Turkish chanteuse has a unique timbre, which gets more mysterious the deeper she goes. This is her 24th album, and it both echoes the Turkish classical tradition and speaks to current social injustices. The backing sound is warm, and the songs segue gracefully one into another.