Vieux Farka Toure - album review (4 stars)

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Vieux Farka Toure (World Village)

You might think that if Vieux Farka Toure entered the music business he would be doomed to failure. As the son of Malian music legend, the late Ali Farka Toure, he would be working in his father’s shadow and probably end up petering out, à la Julian Lennon.

It’s a pleasant surprise then to discover that this debut album is seriously good. Rather than breaking away from his father’s more time-honoured acoustic Saharan sound, Vieux places it at the heart of his oeuvre, fusing it with a pulsating electric guitar that just seems to meander through tracks like ‘Ana’ and the wonderfully soothing ‘Diabate’. Father and son even team up for two tracks, the only existing recordings of both together. It might seem like world music sacrilege for some to follow so closely in his father’s footsteps, but even though Ali’s revered sound is deep in the roots of this album, Vieux’s modern-Afro take on this could be the start of something great. (Florence Thompson)

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