Album Review: A Curva Da Cintura by Arnaldo Antunes
Very Good, Based on 3 Critics
PopMatters - 80 Based on rating 8/10
Toumani Diabaté is collaborating again. “Mali-Brasil” says the album’s subtitle. It’s him and two Brazilians, Antunes, the singer-songwriter, and Scandurra, the rock guitarist. The Brazilian voices grind dry and rumble, not always melodious, but the kora is melodious with whatever it does, and this combination is not quite like anything Diabaté has done before—the grubby nuzzling of Antunes and the honey trickle of the harp.
Toumani Diabaté has spent his life demonstrating the versatility of the kora, working with everyone from the flamenco group Ketama to Björk, Taj Mahal and Afrocubism. Now comes another fusion experiment in which he is joined by the poet/singer-songwriter Arnaldo Antunes, and rock guitarist Edgard Scandurra. The result is an intriguing if uneven set in which Antunes' sturdy, quietly intense vocals and straightforward melodies are set against far more complex backing provided by intertwining kora and guitar.
Unusual supergroup delivers a set that’s more sketches than songs proper. Jon Lusk 2012 This rather oddball Mali/Brazil collaborative album comprises the follow-up to a performance by these three musicians at the Brazilian festival Back2Black in 2010. Singer/poet Arnaldo Antunes is best known outside Brazil for his role in another three-way collaboration – the hugely successful Tribalistas album he made with compatriots Marisa Monte and Carlinhos Brown in 2002.