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-  Label: 'Wagram/Monuno'
-  Genre: 'Dance' -  Release Date: '25th May 2018'

Our Rating:
The very agreeable and smooth global rhythms reflect this album's exotic recording locations: Mali, Burkima Faso, Barcelona and Paris.

It all sounds so effortless but is clearly the carefully crafted work of top notch musicians and an accomplished singer. Fenfo translates a 'something to say' and the album is certainly something to hear.

Diawara is a beautiful, charismatic and soulful performer who mostly sings in her native Malian language (Bambara) . This signifies her deep respect for her African heritage although, at the same time, she is not shy of embracing a modern dynamic; "I'm a traditionalist but I need to experiment too", she says.

Most listeners will have to guess the meaning of the songs although the opening to the video of the single, Niterini, announces it to be about the plight of one of the world's one billion migrants. Despite her commitment to this most divisive of modern issues, the series of stunning costumes Diawara wears shows she is not inclined to slum it for a political or humanitarian cause.

If there's a fault it is that the music on her second solo album is almost too faultless. The slickness makes it a delight to listen to but the jazz meets funk arrangements are so meticulously constructed that I can't help yearning for a bit of raw energy to muddy the clear waters a little.

This is dance music for an elegant nightspot rather than a seedy disco.

Fatoumata Diawara's website
  author: Martin Raybould

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