Posts Tagged ‘gambari band’

Top of the World June 2016: The best new releases

Posted on May 5th, 2016 in Recent posts, Reviews by .

Our selection of the top ten new releases reviewed in the June (#118) issue.

Imarhan
Imarhan (City Slang)

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The young Touareg band Imarhan release an enthralling collection of songs, drawing influences from a variety of subjects and musical styles to create a dynamic and diverse debut album.

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Sociedade Recreativa
Sociedade Recreativa (Jarring Effects)

Sociedade Recreativa Cover

With help from producer Maga Bo, Brazilians Sociedade Recreativa create a memorable album mixing traditional instruments and sound effects.

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Robert ‘Robi’ Svärd
Pa’ki Pa’ka (Asphalt Tango Records)

Robert 'Robi' Svärd - Pa'ki Pa'ka Cover

Trained as a classical guitarist while growing up in Australia, Swedish guitarist Svärd showcases his unique and individual take on flamenco music on this beautiful debut.

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Afro Celt Sound System
The Source (ECC Records)

Afro Celt Sound System - The Source Cover

A reenergised Afro Celt Sound System return after more than a decade since their last album.

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Jarlath Henderson
Hearts Broken, Heads Turned (Bellows Records)

Jarlath Henderson - Hearts Broken, Heads Turned Cover

Piper-turned-singer Jarlath Henderson releases a confident debut as a solo artist. Displaying impressive arrangements and musicality, the album exudes a youthful yet matured sentiment.

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9Bach
Anian (Real World)

9Bach - Anian Cover

9Bach deliver a cohesive set of original and traditional Welsh folk songs on their third album, a soulful and brooding project that explores themes of human nature and the outside world.

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Sierra Hull
Weighted Mind (Rounder Records)

Sierra Hull - Weighted Mind Cover

This album captures the mind of a maturing Sierra Hull, looking for direction in a changing world, showing off her ability as a talented instrumentalist and a sensitive songwriter.

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Joe Driscol & Sekou Kouyaté
Monistic Theory (Cumbancha)

Joe Driscoll & Sekou Kouyate - Monistic Theory Cover

Rapper Driscoll and kora player Kouyaté collaborate once again, seamlessly blending their own unique styles to create their own musical language.

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Gambari Band
Kokuma (Membran)

Gambari Band - Kokuma Cover

This nine-piece are a prime example of the great music currently coming out of Mali. Their debut, full of uplifting harmonies and explosive polyrhythms, is a captivating listen.

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Yo-Yo Ma & The Silk Road Ensemble
Sing Me Home (Sony Music Masterworks)

Yo-Yo Ma & The Silk Road Ensemble - Sing Me Home Cover

Cello icon Yo-Yo Ma and his Silk Road Ensemble release their most diverse project yet, covering a range of musical worlds, from Mali to China.

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Gambari Band – Kokuma | Album Review | Top of the World

Posted on April 28th, 2016 in Recent posts, Reviews by .

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Words by Nigel Williamson

Gambari Band - Kokuma Cover

You want ngoni lutes? We got ngoni lutes
★★★★

The Germany-based Membran is the new home of Christian Scholze’s ground-breaking Network label, which did so much to put African music on the map in the 1980s and 90s. Taking their name from a traditional rhythm from the Mopti region, the nine-piece Gambari Band were formed by exiles from Bassekou Kouyaté’s Ngoni ba group – and it’s the sound of the ngoni (lute) that’s at the core here. Oumar Barou Kouyaté takes the solos but he’s supported by two further ngoni players, creating a glorious mesh of fiercely plucked and snapping strings.

Recorded at Bamako’s Studio Bogolan over six days in late 2012, the Seattle-based producer Mell Dettmer has captured a set of stellar performances – earthy and graceful, full of uplifting harmonies and explosive polyrhythms. Only the vocals of the two female lead singers, Kankou and Massaran Kouyaté were overdubbed, giving the disc the energy and urgency of a live recording. If you’re ever in Bamako, they’re regulars at the Hotel Maya. Failing that, hopefully there’s an adventurous promoter who might bring them to Europe…

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