the fabled Samba Toure is back with a new album entitled “Gandadiko”,which means “Land of drought”,under the ever-growing Glitterbeat records.Throughout his entire discography; from “Crocodile Blues” to “Albala”, one gets a sense of apprehension and fear, which was not at all surprising given the political instability that was present in Mali at the time.
It nevertheless gave birth to some of the most excellent work that I have come to treasure; records like “Be Ki don”and “Yermakoye”. Last year he released the “Fondo” album which I feel is a lot similar to the album ill be fixated on.
In Gandadiko, not much has changed. He maintains a very crude sound with vocals that only communicate grievance. In a recent interview for a popular newspaper,he said “I sing about what I see, and now I see a lot of troubles”[sic].
His vocals are more relaxed and there’s a more cozy feel to it as opposed to tracks in his previous albums that were more environmental; so much so that you can actually feel the terrain. I like how in “Chiri hari” there is an exploratory effort with the Kora and the “I Kana Korto” track as well, where there is so much variety in the instrumentation, which is something not typical of him. “Touri Idje Bibi” is also a fantastic demonstration of just how great he is with the guitar. It has such an enchanting groove guaranteed to have you come back for it time and time again. Otherwise, it’s an overall great album from one of Africa’s legends. Merci !