Album: Amadou & Mariam, Folila (Because Music)

 

Folila was originally intended as two separate albums, one featuring American guest spots, the other collaborations with African and European musicians.

Taken together, the results demonstrate how adeptly Amadou & Mariam straddle both local and global, with a truly "world" music that deserves mainstream chart success rather than niche appreciation. The guests range from Jake Shears's falsetto refrain on "Metemya" and Amp Fiddler's soul plaint on "Wari", to the gruff vocal of controversial French rocker Bertrand Cantat on the bluesy "Oh Amadou"; but at the heart of every song is the irresistible combination of Amadou's trilling, cyclical guitar figures and the duo's uplifting vocal harmonies. Best of all is the single "Dougou Badia", featuring Santigold, which ends with full-on duelling rock guitars.

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