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April 12, 2015 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm EDT
Great guitars, lightning-fast rhythms and a rotating cast of vocalists from the capital city of Niger, West Africa’s largest nation. By the time Tal National reached international acclaim with 2013’s “Kaani,” the band’s first release outside of Niger, they had spent more than a decade crisscrossing their native country, usually on dirt pathways through the Sahara, playing epic five-hour sets, seven days a week, selling their CDs on street corners and roundabouts. In the process, they became Niger’s most popular band, with songs constantly blasted on national TV and cell phones everywhere. Following FatCat’s release of “Kaani,” Western audiences and critics quickly embraced the band’s singular and finely-honed sound. NPR were hit by “the band’s tightness and fiery energy”; The Guardian praised “their full-tilt approach, and hypnotic intensity”; whilst Songlines wrote of “a rich, hybrid sound that draws on familiar West African elements to create something rewardingly fresh and different.” FatCat released the dazzling follow-up, “Zoy Zoy,” on April 13th.
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