Trio Da Kali and Kronos Quartet-Ladilikan (World Circuit Records)

For 'Ladilakan' (Bambara for "words of advice") World Circuit brought together West African Trio Da Kali with the San Francisco based Kronos Quartet. Trio Da Kali originated as an initiative by Dr. Lucy Duran, tasked by the Aga Khan Music Initiative to put together a griot-super group. The first one she called on was Fodé Lassana Diabaté, band leader and a gifted Guinean balafon player some of you might know from his part in Cuban-Malian fusion project Afrocubism. For the vocal part Hawa Kasse Mady Diabaté, daughter of the famous Malian griot Kasse Made Diabaté, was drafted, and Malian ngoni-bassist Mamadou Kouyaté, son of ngoni virtuoso Bassekou Kouyaté completed the trio. Kronos Quartet (David Harrington - violin, John Sherba - violin, Hank Dutt - viola, Sunny Yang - cello), reworking compositions by twentieth-century masters like Bartók and modern composers like Schnittke, Osvaldo Golijov, Vladimir Martynov or Aleksandra Vrebalov, jazz legends and rock heroes such as Charles Mingus, Thelonious Monk and Jimi Hendrix, since 1973, needs little introduction. For 'Ladilikan' the Quartet called on American composer Jacob Garchik, who rearranged Trio Da Kali's repertoire for violin and cello. Before they recorded this album together, the trio and the quartet first performed a number of live shows together, and 'Ladilikan' was eventually recorded in only four days in a studio in Switzerland. During that process they tried to approach the live experience as much as possible and tried to avoid overdubs where possible. The result is a mesmerizingly beautiful album reminding us both of Rokia Traoré's 'Bowmboï' and the kora/cello experiments of Ballaké Sissoko's and Vincent Segal.


Added: Sep 28, 2017