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TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 3 June 2013
This 2005 Grammy-winner featured the late, great blues guitarist Ali Farka Toure (no. 76 in Rolling Stone's table of the `Greatest Guitarists of All Time') who died in 2006 of bone cancer; and Kora player Toumani Diabate.

Both these excellent musicians are from Mali (though from different regions and traditions) and the album was recorded in a mobile studio in the Hotel Mande in Bamako, on the banks of the River Niger. The great world music enthusiast and promoter Ry Cooder also plays on some tracks.

The music is mainly instrumental, quite sophisticated and very mellow. In the manner of world-class jazz musicians Toure and Diabate (and Cooder, at times) respond to each other to weave delicate improvisational patterns and make great relaxing music.

This album can be recommended if you like West African music or even if you don't know the music from Mali very well. There was a follow-up album from these two simply called `Ali Farka Toure and Toumane Diabate' recorded in London just prior to Toure's death which is so outstanding it eclipses even `In the Heart of the Moon', and for that reason only I would give four-and-a-half stars to ItHotM rather than five.

The CD is a fine package with a tasteful 16-page booklet featuring short essays about the project penned by Lucy Duran, Nick Gold and separately by both Diabate and Toure, and decorated with some evocative and rather arty images of Mali.
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on 4 April 2013
I fell in love with the kora when I saw Catrin Finch, harpist, performing together with Seckou Keita on kora. The kora sound, softly thrumming below the sometimes jangly harp, entranced me. This album produces the same feeling, with the hypnotic repetition of the base note providing the rhythm while the harmonies weave above it. It is soothing music, with a warm glow but also a lifting of the spirits, and gives a lilt to my step if I am going about my chores while listening. It is never obtrusive or overpowering, but I drink in every note, it is not background music. These two master musicians clearly gain energy from each other and creatively spur each other on. This has shot to the top of my favourite CD's, and everyone who hears it wants to know what it is, even my notably un-musical partner.
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on 25 February 2016
I could listen to this over and over and over. The excellence of the performers is right there for us all to hear and the warmth of their music transports me in space and time and to a place I would be happy to spend the rest of my days in, kicking back, gently dreaming. The track 'Gomni' alone would make every penny of this purchase worthwhile. It's not quite Savane but I'd hate to have to live on the difference!
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on 18 March 2017
Love it,love it,love it.This was a gift for a stressed out friend but first discovered on you tube.I don,t understand the words but just love the music
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on 1 February 2015
There is a clarity and beauty of production on both this and the sister album 'Ali and Toumani'. Beautiful to sit and listen to or to float in the air as background music.
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on 29 December 2015
Love this! Am new to these artists having heard an acquaintance playing a track from this album.
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on 30 May 2017
The most beautiful and honest music you are likely to hear. No gimmicks, just plain good music. Toure and Diabate's instrumental duet is out of this world.
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on 23 January 2014
This album is intense as well as being soothing and relaxing. If you like Ali Farka Toure and Toumani Diabate then you're sure to like this. It has depth and quality for the discerning listener.
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on 30 January 2013
Don't usually listen to this type of music but after reading reviews I thought I'd give it a go and I'm glad I did. I found it peaceful, evocative and uplifting and great for relaxing to.
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on 30 March 2018
despite some small scratches, i love the music.
Thanks a lot, and best wishes.
Gratefully,
Hania
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