Salif Keita

Ko-Yan

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

From the voice of Mali comes this album, full of vaguely '80s synth work and Salif Keita's perfect brand of vocals. The album is a long distance from the Ambassadeurs days with Mory Kante and/or Kante Manfila, but it's worth hearing for the progression of Keita's sound. There is certainly a dichotomy on the album between more traditional sounds, with cascading vocal lines from Keita coupled with largely traditional instruments, and the more modern side, with slightly more pop-oriented vocals coupled with synthesizers and electric guitars. The sound tends to alternate from one end of the spectrum to the other, showcasing a nice array of sounds for the listener. Any fan of Keita will be pleased by this effort, though fans of the other members of les Ambassadeurs as well as the Rail Band might note the absence of the other seminal players in the history of Malian music. Pick it up as a fan of Keita, as a fan of Malian music in general, or simply as a curious listener. Don't look to it expecting a rehashing of the old days, though.

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