Friday, August 7

Kronos Quartet and Trio Da Kali

- May 21, 2018

An evening of two halves and each fascinating. To start the most beautifully crafted live/film documentary, the story of Kronos in moving image, stills, live music and commentary from maker Sam Green. An amazing collection of archival material but better than that a showcase of some of the best of modern music, the brilliant commissions and collaborations that Kronos made and interviews with many of those iconic composers. Add Kronos playing their work live and you have a recipe for something very special indeed.

In the second half Kronos return with their latest collaborators Trio Da Kali, a combo from Mali. Musical director Lassana Diabaté plays the marimba like balafon masterfully, tribal sounds mixing with jazz, Mamadou hits the bass ngoni with rhythmic effect, deep bas notes are delivered with a percussive relevance and above all this Hawa ‘Kassé Mady’ Diabaté. Now this is one hell of a voice, heart piercingly clear, soulful, soaring… too many words required to fully describe this human instrument, it simply has to be heard, and this you can do on their new release with Kronos.

If I had any misgiving about the evening I would have liked to hear a little more from Kronos alone and beautiful as the collaboration is, the tone of the balafon is a pretty insistent sound that dominates rather stridently. It didn’t spoil a superb evening though and I left buzzing with new sounds and extended knowledge.

Dome Concert Hall

20 May

Andrew Kay

Rating: ★★★★★

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