The best new albums from around the world (July 2020) | Songlines
Thursday, June 18, 2020

The best new albums from around the world (July 2020)

Great new releases from Dakhabrakha, Lido Pimienta, Melingo, Joseph Tawadros, Kadialy Kouyate and more... Tracks from all of these albums are included on the free cover-CD with the July issue

Totw 159 Sleeve

Trio Tekke

Strovilos Riverboat Records

This is another winner from the class act that brought us the great albums Zivo and Samás. Here they are joined by three well-known Greek singers who help to embed this new venture firmly in the contemporary folk scene of the country. All of these are originals and they have pushed the electronic boat out a little more on some of the tracks, all while retaining their trademark catchy rhythms and melodic sense of the wider Balkans. Maria Lord

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue


Kaloli Crammed Discs

Consisting of members from the Nilotika Cultural Ensemble and UK producers pq and Spooky-J, Nihiloxica enliven the interstitial space between club dance floor and musical tradition, with each of Kaloli’s tracks taking a traditional folk rhythm as its basis. Alex de Lacey

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Lido Pimienta

Miss Colombia ANTI-/Epitaph

Lido Pimienta calls her third album ‘a cynical love letter’ to her home country and the Colombian people. Based in Toronto, she sings about Colombia’s deep social and political troubles, pointing her finger to her fellow countrymen’s passiveness. But instead of sounding enraged by the constant disrespect for indigenous people’s rights, machismo, gender violence or her experience as an immigrant, Pimienta presents an album that is miraculously beautiful and superbly tasteful. Gonçalo Frota

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Joseph Tawadros

Betrayal of a Sacred Sunflower Joseph Tawadros

It’s high praise to compare the album’s wistful mood to Anouar Brahem’s ravishing Le Pas du Chat Noir; however, there are also moments of genuine fun and anyone doubting the oud’s ability to be a groovy funk-machine need only listen to ‘On the Flipside’. Bill Badley

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Kadialy Kouyate

Nemo KKSoundArchive

Nemo means ‘Blessings’ in Wolof, Kadialy’s mother tongue, and this glass half-full aesthetic buoys an album rooted in the traditional griot repertoire. It is given a contemporary vibe by a tight-knit crew on bass, guitar, percussion and intermittently bombastic kit drums, the driving rhythms leavened by Griselda Sanderson’s fiddle playing and the sparkling patterns of Kadialy’s kora. Jane Cornwell

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Danilo Brito

Da Natureza das Coisas Orpheu Music

Choro, the popular urban music that originated in Rio de Janeiro in the 19th century, translates into English as ‘lament.’ Ironically, in the hands of the dapper mandolinist and choro authority Danilo Brito, it is one of the sweetest and most uplifting sounds imaginable, redolent of long carefree days spent on Copacabana beach. A mix of Portuguese influences and African rhythms, choro has come to be regarded as one of the definitive cultural styles of Brazil. Russell Higham

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue


Oasis Buda Musique

Daniel Melingo has travelled far from the pared-down dub beats of his 1998 debut Tangos Bajos. Over two decades, folky turns, theatricality and wider world music ideas have been tossed into the mix. With Oasis, he shifts even further away from the rhythms and rubric of traditional tango. Explicitly Greek, vaguely Asian and rock-leaning compositions dominate the track list, with bandoneón riffs on ‘La Búsqueda’ adrift amid programming, and the snatches of tango surfacing in ‘Caminito Rebetiko’ having to jostle for space with baglamas and bouzouki. Chris Moss

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Hamish Napier

The Woods Strathspey Records

The Woods marks the third instalment of acclaimed musician and composer Hamish Napier’s ode to his native Scottish Highlands. Following on from 2016’s The River and 2018’s The Railway, this new release is the centrepiece of his proposed pentalogy inspired by his homeland. Featuring Napier on flute and harmonium, Ross Ainslie on pipes, Steve Byrnes on guitar and drums, Jarlath Henderson on uilleann pipes, James Lindsay on double bass and Innes Watson on viola and fiddle, it is a real collection of musicianship. Billy Rough

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

Maria Kalaniemi & Eero Grundström

Mielo Akerö Records

Kalaniemi has influenced countless musicians, in Finland and across the world, with her phrasing and breathing, her attention to detail, her sound, collaborations and compositions. There’s an urgency to this, which she says ‘screamed and demanded to be played, sung and shared.’ Mielo (Mind) is a walk in the woods, nature representing life. Kalaniemi is joined by harmonium player Grundström, member of the brilliant harmonica group Sväng; his contributions here add a depth, a grounding to an album of immense beauty. Fiona Talkington

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue


Alambari DakhaBrakha

On DakhaBrakha’s new album, Alambari, there are a couple of tracks – like ‘Dostochka’ – which blend Slavic vocals with a ruminative blues mood drawing from an interest in African music. Elsewhere the group can be experimental, filmic, moody and avant-garde, with a minimalist and yet at the same time plaintive sound reminiscent of Janáček with the odd electronic touch. Robert Rigney

Read the full review in the July 2020 issue

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