Monday, 9 February 2015

Music - Part 387 - Samba Toure

Samba Toure – Gandadiko (Glitterbeat)
26 February 2015

Malian Songhai-blues master returns with his new album.  

With 2013s Albala album, Samba Toure made what was widely acclaimed as the best album of his life.  At the age of 45 he sculpted an album that painted a sorry picture of the troubles and political crisis in his homeland.  His new album, maintains the position in Mali but now offers hope despite the title roughly translating as Burning Land.

Largely influenced by Blues which Toure combines with traditional instrumentation, Gandadiko is also a mix of dance, funk and pshychedelia.  Toure Idje Bibi (Black Fruits) for instance is as addictive as it gets with a groove that resonates throughout the songs length and an infectious hook which surprisingly stays long after it has finished.

Where Samba seems to succeed when others fail is in his trueness and openness to his music.  His lyrics are not compromised when complex backing is brought in and the overall feel of the album does bring about a sense of uplift.

Whilst he has the advantage of hindsight whereby he can teach his family the benefits of positivity it is in his music that he spreads the word to nations.  On Su Wilile (The Living Dead) he warns of alcohol and drugs using the story of an old friend whose life has been taken over by alcoholism.

Hope does spring eternal in album closer Woye Kate (Come Back Home), a duet with Ahmed Ag Kaedi from Tuareg band Amanar, where the prospect of talk and communication begins to supersede the chances of war. “We shall reconstruct the Country, and we won’t let anyone speak for us again”.    It’s an optimistic thought but one which spans the ten tracks on the album.

Toure’s guitar playing throughout is accomplished and ever changing, a true talent in todays World music scene.


Glitterbeat Records
Samba Toure website
Samba Toure on Twitter
Samba Toure on Facebook

Published on Louder Than War 31/01/15 - here

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