February 20, 2010 12:59 am

Ali Farka Touré and Toumani Diabaté: Ali And Toumani

Ali Farka Touré and Toumani Diabaté
Ali And Toumani
World Circuit

5 star rating

When he made this recording with Toumani Diabaté, both men knew that Ali Farka Touré was dying. Ali and Toumani follows the Grammy-winning In the Heart of the Moon, deepening and steadying the music.

The opener, “Ruby”, is perfect: acoustic guitar that settles into a slow groove before the kora comes in over the top, circling and commenting on the rhythm. Cachaito Lopez plays double bass, further anchoring the album. “Fantasia” is a firefly kora improvisation, prefiguring the glorious solo album that Diabaté would record next.

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