Desert Road

Justin Adams has been a working musician for 20 years.

Justin Adams has been a working musician for 20 years. In that time, he has produced the French act LoJo and played with artists like Jah Wobble, Sinéad O'Connor, and Robert Plant (he's touring with Plant now). Busy, indeed, Desert Road marks his first solo album. Adams played most of the instruments on the record, including guitar, bendir, organ, and n'goni; he also did the programming and wrote the songs. Tuareg guitar music is a clear influence here, as is Malian music in general. In doing his own thing, Adams has dramatized the sympathy between certain Western musical styles, such as the blues and sub-Saharan music. Adams sings as well, but this album is mainly an instrumental journey into the solitude and exoticism of the northeastern Sahara. The essence of Adams' idea is best expressed in the tunes "Majnoun & Leila," the title track, and "Blue Man."—PVV

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