Posts Tagged ‘coldplay’
The husband and wife duo Amadou and Mariam are due to release their latest album, Folila, on April 2.
Amadou and Mariam, who met and fell in love at a school for the blind, have been performing bluesy music from Bamako, Mali since 1983. Defying all odds the blind couple have become international pop stars and recognisable icons from the West African country.
Their 2004 album Dimache à Bamako launched them into superstardom and they have since been featured on the cover of Songlines, won the 2009 Songlines Music Award for Best Group, released several ‘Best Of’ compilations, published an autobiography and toured with numerous mainstream groups including U2, Blur and Coldplay.
Their upcoming album is much anticipated and is due to feature collaborations with TV on the Radio, Santigold, and Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters.
They recently stopped by The Guardian studio to perform the track ‘Wily Kataso’ from Folila.
Last Friday night I was privileged enough to be one of the 950 people to witness King Creosote and Jon Hopkins perform tracks from their Mercury nominated masterpiece – Diamond Mine – live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall.
Hopkins and Creosote make an interesting and endearing pair. Jon Hopkins, 31, is baby-faced and fashionably dressed while Creosote is lovingly shambolic, scruffy and a good foot shorter to boot. Hopkins – a London-based electronic composer – is best known for his long-term collaborations with Brian Eno, Coldplay and David Holmes and his work on a variety of soundtracks including 2010’s Monster, which was nominated for an Ivor Novello Award for Best Original Score; while Kenny ‘King Creosote’ Anderson, 43, is a singer-songwriter from Fife – who, along with seven others, stars in the Scottish-Canadian supergroup The Burns Unit (see Globe Rocker, issue 71) – and whose prolific 20-year career has spawned over 40 albums, through which the pair trawled to create Diamond Mine.
The stunning – and somewhat heart-breaking – album was seven years in the making and saw Creosote and Hopkins select songs from Anderson’s back catalogue and pair them with instrumentation. Every track on the ambient Diamond Mine is an absolute gem (excuse the pun) with Creosote’s divine, lucid voice and Hopkin’s technical wizardry showcased perfectly across seven sublime songs.
Not many gigs are as well-suited to seated venues as this one – but the QEH proved to be the perfect, intimate venue to spend a blissful evening with Hopkins and Creosote. The songs are as powerful as they are moving – but the mood was lifted somewhat by Creosote’s dry and typically Scottish wit, from joking about his height to trying to sell his squeezebox; teasing Jon about his prodigious talent to mocking his own clumsy playing. At the end of the night, in typical self-deprecating style, Creosote thanks the audience with a simple, “thanks for coming to see a couple of losers.”
I honestly do think that this gig is my favourite gig of the year so far – in keeping with the album, which I’m still playing on loop (it’s perfect Sunday morning music). If you don’t already own Diamond Mine, I insist that you to get your mitts on a copy. You won’t be disappointed.
Rumour has it they will be touring again later this year, so keep your eyes peeled for more dates.