The Kunkan (Voices) label was established in 1975 by Malian Minister of Culture Youssouf Traore to capture the music of several orchestras from different regions of Mali. Technician Bouboukar Traore proved himself a master in the recording phase when he placed the four microphones and recorded the instruments, particularly the congas.
It is hard to believe that a bunch of electricians, policemen, social workers, a nurse and a bassist / customs man were capable of creating this kind of musical landmark. The messages on these recordings are obviously carried with a holy fire.
The sound is bold and righteous, but with an other-worldly vibe too – a really haunting quality that grabs us like some of the most evocative Ethiopian sounds of the 70s! At some level, there's definitely a Mali touch going on in the music – some very tripped-out elements in the production, and a way of wrapping things together with an undercurrent of melancholy.
The result is a magnum opus that sounds hypnotic, from the first to the last note.The sound of Le Jazz Mystère captures the listener in an incredible musical and spiritual hold.