Daby Touré was born in Mauritania, grew up in Senegal, began his professional career in Paris and, for the past two years, has been living in Montreal. I’ve been following his musical evolution since his first album, Diam, released in 2004. The latter, along its follow-up Stereo Spirit (2007), have hardly ever left my ears in about 15 years!
They are the quintessence of Daby Touré’s art: a soft and fair voice, airy in a luminous way. A fabulous talent for melody, the one that touches you straight to the heart and remains in your memory. And a style mixing Afro-pop and folk with a particular sense of intimacy.
After a few more albums of pop and sometimes electric blues, often dressed in a modern electronic way, though discreetly, Émissaire vol.1 is an EP that announces a return to the initial path, that of Diam and Stereo Spirit. The melodies are strong, especially “Voyageurs” (I dare you not to play it in a loop), the rhythms are catchy in their simplicity, the arrangements economical but judicious.
The guitars, acoustic or electric, are in the foreground and subject to little artificial coating. Émissaire vol.1 is a duet album, with excellent Montreal guitarist Chris Velan sharing the bill brilliantly. Maybe that’s the strength of this welcome EP, because Velan fits so well with Touré’s style that it sounds like a soulmate finally met.
Having said that, I hope the next record will offer some new musical elements, in order to make the particularity of Montreal’s imprint on the language of this very talented artist better and more clearly felt.
Don’t miss the launch concert for Émissaire vol.1 by Daby Touré and Chris Velan, live on Facebook on Friday, November 13, at 5 pm.