thu 18/12/2014

world music

CD: Lucas Santtana - Sobre Noites e Dias

The Afro-Atlantic world, in music as well as in religion, has always been characterized by a continuously self-renewing tendency to combine elements from cultures that originate on either side of the ocean. Lucas Santtana is a thoroughly...

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We Made It: Bex Burch, Dagaare Xylophone-Maker

Bex Burch is a percussionist with a classical training at the Guildhall School of Music. First visiting Ghana as an undergraduate, on the recommendation of a Ghanaian friend, she initially felt very uncomfortable there, but gradually grew to love...

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Sacred Monsters, Khan/Guillem, Sadler's Wells

There is a special poignancy to these performances of Sacred Monsters, Sylvie Guillem and Akram Khan's terrific 2006 joint show. Guillem, the former Paris Opéra étoile and Royal Ballet prima ballerina whose singular talent has lit up contemporary...

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Kasse Mady Diabate, Purcell Room, Southbank Centre

Kassé Mady Diabaté is one of the great singers of West Africa, a member of Toumani Diabaté's Symmetric Orchestra and, more recently, the Afrocubism all-star line-up. His latest album Kiriké (Horse’s Saddle) on the Parisian No Format label is a...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Jon Hassell / Brian Eno

Jon Hassell / Brian Eno: Fourth World Vol. 1 - Possible MusicsIts opening is exotic. The music shimmers like heat haze and incorporates a sing-song instrument which might be a treated trumpet, or a high-register bass guitar reverberating like water...

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TOROBAKA, Israel Galván & Akram Khan, Sadler's Wells

When you're talking about dancers, the old adage about genius being 99% perspiration has a point. You have to work damned hard just to be average in professional dance; to be good, like Akram Khan and Israel Galván are good, takes sweat (and tears...

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CD: Kassé Mady Diabaté - Kiriké

In reaching out to audiences beyond the African context, Malian musicians and singers have adopted performance styles that don’t always reflect the intimacy and personal communication so fundamental to the praise-singing at the heart of the region’s...

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Sahara Soul, Barbican

Exoticisation, at an event named "Sahara Soul", was perhaps inevitable. With Tuareg jewellery and souvenirs in the foyer, there was a touristic expectation last night that these genuine desert-dwellers would bring the burning spirit of the Saharan...

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WOMAD 2014, Charlton Park

If I had to pick the highlight of this sun-drenched WOMAD it would have to be the fresh, emotionally charged set of Ukrainian band Dakha Brakha. I can’t recall seeing such a unanimously positive response for a relatively unknown band at the Festival...

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10 Questions for Bassist Marcus Miller

This year’s edition of the Gnawa Festival in the medina of the beautiful coastal town of Essaouira featured two spectacular fusions – between Bessekou Kouyate with Hamid El Kasri on the closing Sunday night, and on Saturday night – in the early...

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CD: Sia Tolno - African Woman

Sia Tolno was born in Freetown, Sierra Leone, had a violent father, was forced to leave the country due to the civil war and ended up in the harsh world of Conakry nightclubs. Life was no bed of roses, in other words. The inspiring thing about this...

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10 Questions for Director Annemarie Jacir

In 2007 Annemarie Jacir made her debut feature, Salt of This Sea, the first film directed by a Palestinian woman director. Her follow-up, When I Saw You, is released this week in the UK, after festival acclaim that saw it receive prizes at...

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