wed 21/08/2019

African music

CD: Africa Express - Egoli

Damon Albarn isn’t just a national treasure but an international one. He seems to spread his reach so widely, with a mix of curiosity and boundless energy, a great deal of discernment and a vision as different as possible from the narrow-minded...

Read more...

CD: Madonna - Madame X

Madonna is the queen of reinvention and Madame X, her 14th studio album, marks another new brilliant, bonkers chapter in her 37-year career. The 13-track CD (15 on the deluxe version) was inspired by a recent spell living in Lisbon, where she...

Read more...

Rokia Traoré: Dream Mandé: Djata, Brighton Festival 2019 review – resonant griot wisdom

Rokia Traoré’s passage through this year’s Brighton Festival has been central, binding it to her Malian identity in a series of gigs. This hands-on Guest Director’s pulsing Afro-rock Opening Night was followed by the first Dream Mandé show’s...

Read more...

Rokia Traoré: Dream Mandé: Bamanan Djourou, Brighton Festival 2019 review – traditions soar free

Much of Rokia Traoré’s set on Saturday night comprised folk songs about Mali’s warrior kings, connecting with her country’s fabulously wealthy, proudly powerful past. They suit this diplomat’s daughter’s regal stature, which she has put at the...

Read more...

theartsdesk on Vinyl 49 - Part 2: Prince, Johnny Cash, Sparks, Toyah, Adrian Sherwood and more

We return, after only a week away, with Part 2 of Volume 49. Starting out with an amazing comeback from Adrian Sherwood’s Pay It All Back compilation series as Vinyl of the Month, this edition takes in everything from Prince to death metal to...

Read more...

Rokia Traoré: Né So, Brighton Festival review - an Afro-psychedelic head-fry

The last thing many were expecting from Rokia Traoré’s opening appearance at this year’s Brighton Festival was an Afro-psychedelic head-fry, yet she and her four-piece band prove thoroughly capable of swirling our minds right off out of it. When she...

Read more...

10 Questions for Brighton Festival CEO Andrew Comben

The Brighton Festival begins in May. Since 2014 theartsdesk has had a media partnership with this lively, multi-faceted event which takes place over three weeks. This year the Guest Director is the Malian musician Rokia Traoré, who inhabits a...

Read more...

theartsdesk in Zanzibar - behind the veil

Damn exotica. It has a habit of marshalling your gaze away from shabby Soviet-style apartment blocks and training it on white-washed palaces with ornate doors and latticed balconies; away from traffic jams of fume-spouting 4x4s and on to the old...

Read more...

Brighton Festival 2019 launches with Guest Director Rokia Traoré

The striking cover for the Brighton Festival 2019 programme shouts out loud who this year’s Guest Director is. Silhouetted in flowers, in stunning artwork by Simon Prades, is the unmistakeable profile of Malian musician Rokia Traoré. Taking place...

Read more...

theartsdesk on Vinyl 47: The Beta Band, Ry Cooder, The Cardigans, Sgt. Pepper goes jazz and more

Let’s cut straight to the chase. Here are reviews of 48 records, running riot across genre boundaries and categorizations, from preposterous pop metal to woodland-themed classical piano pieces. It’s the wildest vinyl ride in review-land, an...

Read more...

Songlines Encounters Festival, Kings Place review - mellifluous launch from African strings

The Songlines Encounters festival is in its eighth year, and opened its doors on Thursday night at Kings Place in London with 3MA, (TroisMa in French), comprising Malian kora player Ballake Sissoko, Moroccan oud player Driss El Maloumi and...

Read more...

Africa: A Journey Into Music, BBC Four review - too little, too late?

BBC Four is the TV music equivalent of those oldsters music mags like Q and Mojo. Have there been five, or is it six, documentaries about Queen on the channel? You can sense the commissioners feeling with this new series they have now done...

Read more...
Subscribe to African music