Guitars from the desert by Tinariwen – a group with Malian roots, and a sound that's all their own! The album's got production that's tighter than some of their previous efforts, but a feel that's far from slick – just a haunting, hypnotic blend of the band's many guitars – built up into wonderful rhythms that start slow, then really take off. Almost all numbers have vocals, which slide into the blend beautifully – and titles include "Assouf", "Mano Dayak", "Cler Achel", "Soixante Trois", "Awa Didjen", "Imidiwan Winakalin", and "Izarharh Tenere". CD
An all-star effort from Herbie Hancock – like his previous record, a set that's filled with guest appearances from really dynamic range of talents! This collaborative change in Herbie's later years is a real surprise, and it's definitely helped him explore music with the sort of freedom to genre-step that he had back in the 70s – maybe not as cutting edge as in those days, but still surprisingly strong at the core. India Arie sings on a version of "Imagine", which also features Konono and Jeff Beck; John Legend and Pink sing on "Don't Give Up"; Ceu is on "Tempo De Amor"; The Chieftains play on "The Times They Are A Changing"; Los Lobos and Tinariwen are on "Tamatant Tilay/Exodus", Dave Matthews sings and plays on "Tomorrow Never Knows"; James Morrison guests on "A Change Is Gonna Come", and Chaka Khan, Wayne Shorter, and Anoushka Shankar all appear on "The Song Goes On". CD
(Out of print.)
Jowee Omicil —
Let's Bash ... CD Jazz Village (France), 2017. New Copy ...
Sweet reeds and plenty of Fender Rhodes – a set that has Jowee Omicil blowing soprano sax, alto, flute, and clarinet – over a set of tunes that move along with a gentle sort of groove! The album's got a nice polish, but is also hipper than smooth jazz too – with some rootsier currents from time to time, and just the right sort of use of electric elements, so that they never overwhelm the acoustic sound of the leader. Songs are dedicated to Ornette Coleman, Tinariwen, Roy Hargrove, and others – and titles include "Sur Le Pont D'Avignon", "A Si Pare", "Love & Honesty", "Something Clear", "Twa Groove", and "Pipillita". CD
A great set of music that's literally as its title indicates – compiled from the memory cards from cell phone users in the Saharan Desert – not only a fascinating selection of modern West African music, but a bit of a time capsule of modern "connected" musical culture of the region! It's actual songs, not some collection of ring tones or phone sound errata – with songs by Group Anmataff, Yeli Fuzzo, Amanar, Mdou Moctar, Bayta Ag Bay and others – many with a sound informed by the modernity that goes along with the cell phone era – home studio recordings, synths, loops, etc. It's music that is listened to, and passed along, via modern telecommunications – possibly the primary means of distribution for some of it! Includes "Tinariwen" by Group Anmataff, "Abande" by Yeli Fuzzo, "Tahoultine" by Mdou Moctar, "Faroter" by Joskar Et Flamzy, "Aicha" by Bayta Ag Bay, "Guetna" by Negib Ould Ngainich and more. LP, Vinyl record album
Even after all these years, the BBC is still a magical place of experimentation and new discovery – as you'll hear in this special release of recordings from the Late Junction programme on Radio 3! The show strives to bring together artists with different backgrounds – and gives them the space and resources to create new music together – sounds that span scenes and styles, while crossing music and national borders – in collaborations that are as breathtaking as they are beautiful! The album opens up with plenty of surprises – and titles include "People Folk" by Tinariwen and Tunng, "Citius Altius" by Simon Fisher Turner and Martin Baker, "Where The Heart Is" by Kate Tempest and Elysian String Quartet, "Piece No 5" by John Paul Jones and Erland Dahlen, "Drilling An Ocean For You" by AGF and Gudrun Gut, "Greenwich Pier" by Ana Silvera and Maya Youssef, and "Talibe" by Diabel Cisscokho, Dadialy Koyate, and Finn Peters. LP, Vinyl record album