Blur’s Damon Albarn has traveled to Mali to record an album with the likes of Brian Eno, Nick Zinner, and Idris Elba.
As a continuation of the Africa Express project, Damon Albarn has gone abroad once again, to the city Bamako, which is the capitol of Mali. He, along with Brian Eno, Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner, Holy Other, Idris Elba from “The Wire”, and other artists, including local Mali musicians are making an album to continue the collaboration project that led to a train tour across the UK last year.
With the recent political turmoil and the struggles of the country, Albarn stated to The Guardian:
“At times it has felt odd in Bamako, with the problems in the north, but I’m just trying to personally establish dialogue with the people in this country and the music.”
As Pitchfork relayed, Eno said:
I was quite surprised coming here how broken the place is… How the streets are terrible. The open sewers stink. It’s very disheartening in a way. But what is really strong here is social infrastructure—it’s so powerful and rich. My feeling is that Malian music draws attention to the richness of that social capital, and if you listen to it, you realise something about this society really is sorted.
Africa Express will perform October 19 at the Fiesta Des Suds in Marseille, France. The performance will feature Albarn, Zinner, Rachid Taha, Fatoumata Diawara, the Noisettes, Django Django, Tony Allen, Bassekou Kouyate, and more.