Various artists - Songlines Music Awards 2012 (4 stars)

Various artists - Songlines Music Awards 2012

Innovative magazine championing new and classic world music acts

(Songlines/Proper Music)

Despite difficult times for music business sales, with popular small independents reporting they are barely covering their costs, let’s hear it for this innovative magazine. Songlines champions new and classic acts, offering a bimonthly vision of the diverse with superb articles and covermount CDs.

This compilation album rounds up the nominees for the 4th annual Songlines Music Awards, where artists including Staff Benda Bilili and Amadou & Mariam have previously scooped awards. With 16 artists, from Cooder to Shankar, Tinariwen to Kronos, it’s a tough choice between candidates for Best Artist, Best Group, and Cross Cultural Collaboration. The musicianship is superb, the range astonishing. For Newcomer, Fatoumata Diawara definitely gets this reviewer’s vote.

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