World Music

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Ishta: Ishta (Monkey)

2 Jan 2006  |  <1 min read

Listening to this multiculti outfit from Auckland qualifies you for frequent flyer points: the line-up has musicians from Dutch, Kiwi, Israeli, Indian and French backgrounds; and the instrumental artillery on display includes sitar, saxophone, didgeridoo, guitar, flute and double bass. All of which could make for an unworkable implosion of world fusion, if it weren't for the keen... > Read more

Drop the Soap

Ali Farka Toure/Toumani Diabate: In the Heart of the Moon (Elite)

15 Dec 2005  |  <1 min read

In world music circles Malian guitarist Toure and kora player Diabate, are acknowledged geniuses, and Toure’s playing and sandpaper vocal style have drawn comparisons with Delta blues musicians. He almost leapt to greater recognition with Talking Timbuktu a few years ago (with Buena Vista Social Club prime-mover Ry Cooder, in the background here with his percussionist son Joachim).... > Read more

Natacha Atlas: The Best of Natacha Atlas (Mantra)

1 Jun 2005  |  <1 min read

Atlas -- born in Belgium but with family links to Egyptian, Palestinian and Moroccan cultures -- is one the most thrilling contemporary voices of the Middle East crescent. She came to attention in the early 90s with Jah Wobble’s Invaders of the Heart then the dance-electronica outfit TransGlobal Underground out of London. Her solo career began with the Diaspora album in 95 and since... > Read more

BAABA MAAL INTERVIEWED (1999): The soul of Senegal

10 Jul 2000  |  3 min read

It opens with a hush of Celtic-sounding voices, all that airy, Eirey ambience so familiar from Enya and the like. But then something peculiar happens. That isn't a guitar coming in there, but something more primitive sounding. Something more ... African? Then a penetrating voice slices across the top, a wail from some place more primal and universal. When Senegalese singer... > Read more