4

Ballake Sissoko & Vincent Segal: Musique De Nuit

James Nadal By

Sign in to view read count
Expanding on the adage that less is more, Malian kora master Ballaké Sissoko and renowned French cellist Vincent Segal have taken an ascetic minimalistic approach on Musique De Nuit. This melding of primordial African intonations with Baroque inclinations, has yielded a stimulating and unique hybrid acoustic format, which they first experimented with in "Chamber Music," back in 2009. As with that production, this latest release is also recorded in Bamako, Mali, only this time half the record was done on Sissoko's rooftop, at his home, for the genuine aural experience of a field recording.

The title came about from the night hours which they chose to record, when most of Bamako is asleep, and the air is cooler and quieter. "Niandou," is the first of four tracks done on the rooftop, al fresco, with the tape picking up surrounding rumbles, dins, and gusts of wind. This scenario only heightened the interplay between Sissoko and Segal, as they went in with a sketched idea from which to expand and improvise from. "Passa Quatro," is a nod to the post-bossa nova sound of the Brazilian viola-caipira, done in engaging hypnotic tempo. "Balazando," and N"kapalema," exude the ambiance which permeates the music of Mali, with Sissoko plucking his kora in tune with his heritage, allowing Segal to exhibit his amazing bowing skills and technique.

On "Diaboro," they head into Studio Bogolan in Bamako with invited vocalist Babani Kone offering the authentic griot depiction of an ancient tale. "Super Etoile," is performed within the framework of the Senegalese guitar style of Jimmy Mbaye, who backed singer Youssou N'Dour on his rise to fame. The pace is brought way down during "Prelude," which displays an obvious classical influence, but then "Samba Tomara" brings forth the underlying Euro-African current that is evident throughout. The record closes with the title track wrapping up the sentiment and mood which has been captured, offered back into the mysterious African night.

Sissoko and Segal certainly accomplished what they set out to do on Musique De Nuit. They are not only accomplished musicians, but also good friends, who, having played together for so long, know each other well enough to project their singular sound in a cohesive unison of virtuosity. The unpredicted result of two diverse instruments from dual continental cultures blended with a sophisticated focus is a mesmerizing experience.

Track Listing: Niandou; Passa Quatro; Balazando; N’Kapalema; Diaboro; Super Etoile; Prelude; Samba Tomora; Musique De Nuit.

Personnel: Ballaké Sissoko: kora; Vincent Segal: cello; Babaní Koné: vocal (5).

Title: Musique De Nuit | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Six Degrees Records


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read For the Love of You CD/LP/Track Review For the Love of You
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Recent Developments CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by John Sharpe
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Triple Double CD/LP/Track Review Triple Double
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Agrima CD/LP/Track Review Agrima
by Jerome Wilson
Published: October 21, 2017
Read The Study of Touch CD/LP/Track Review The Study of Touch
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 20, 2017
Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read "Satori" CD/LP/Track Review Satori
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 1, 2016
Read "Panthalassa: The Music Of Miles Davis 1969-1974" CD/LP/Track Review Panthalassa: The Music Of Miles Davis 1969-1974
by Sacha O'Grady
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "One" CD/LP/Track Review One
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 31, 2017
Read "Unnatural  Events" CD/LP/Track Review Unnatural Events
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 16, 2017
Read "Moments Captured" CD/LP/Track Review Moments Captured
by Andrew Luhn
Published: May 12, 2017
Read "Meditation / Resurrection" CD/LP/Track Review Meditation / Resurrection
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 8, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.