Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genre: World Music
Kaloum Star is a great Guinean big band that was founded in 1969. They have survived, while most other groups of that era have fallen by the wayside, due to their constant innovation and their willingness to explore new di... more »
Kaloum Star is a great Guinean big band that was founded in 1969. They have survived, while most other groups of that era have fallen by the wayside, due to their constant innovation and their willingness to explore new directions. They have a solid base of Mandinka music to which they add Fela Kuti-style Afrobeat, a touch of Juju music, a bit of Salsa, some jazz-inflected horns, and occasional soukous and acid rock guitars. Key to appreciating this band is knowing that they are masterful ensemble players; sure there are plenty of fine solos throughout by all of the instrumentalists, but it is their excellence at playing together through intricate changes that really sets this group apart from the rest. Among the outstanding songs on Felenko is "Ouzeguena," which starts as a horn-driven mandinka pop number but changes pace halfway through to end as a Congolese-style soukous sebene guitar romp. The Latin influence takes over on "Ewe Mbore" with its fine flute leads and ripping percussion breaks. Group leader Mamadou Barry deserves credit for some marvelous arrangements, and for putting his band through their paces on this terrific CD that seems to get deeper and richer with each listening. --Jeff Grubb
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A colorful, dynamic recording of the work of truly masterful musicians. This puts many so-called "innovative" Western musical styles to shame. This is cutting-edge stuff that ought to get a wider audience."