Rokia Traore and her group are making some of the most amazing music on the planet right now. A new musical direction brings elements of 70s funk rock to her delicate modern take on Malian traditional music. That could have been a recipe for disaster, but on the evidence of her show last night at The Cedar it’s a spectacular success.
The publicity photo here suggests the Rokia of previous records, beautiful, ethereal and restrained. It’s a misdirection because her shows are exuberant, dynamic workouts that are as great as any powerful rock concert you’ve been to but also have the depth of the ages.