Thursday, 29 July 2010

BKO by Dirtmusic

A combination of north African desert blues and some indie grunge combine on this album which includes members who have variously played with The Bad Seeds, Sonic Youth and The Lemonheads.
Sometimes it works but at others it is downright annoying – track two, a cover of The Velvet Underground’s All Tomorrow’s Parties, being possibly the worst offender.
Once you get past that BKO carries you along on its laid back, slightly edgy vibe but never really reaches the intensity of say a Tinariwen or Ali Farka Touré album.
Most of the tracks were recorded in the Malian capital Bamako, which is where the title comes from – BKO is the city’s airport designation,
Dirtmusic venture into the sounds of north Africa are borrowings and nodding acknowledgements and while many of the tracks feature Touareg band Tamikrest they take on the role as an accompaniment rather than full-on collaborators.
Opening track Black Gravity is a good example of what Dirtmusic are about, a crunching guitar riff that screams sand and heat with a hard indie rock sensibility.
This is a well packaged album, with a DVD included and comprehensive sleeve notes. Worth borrowing.

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