What to say about Africa Express? I like Simon Ayre's take:
After five days of thinking about it, it’s time to write something about the Cardiff leg of the Africa Express tour that traveled across the country last week. But what do I write that hasn’t already been said? How do I put into words an experience that left me sat down staring into space for nearly forty minutes when I got home?
I can’t. I’ve tried, I’ve deleted what I’ve written and tried again and again. I’ve given up and come back to it- I just can’t come up with anything that would do it justice.
Here's a five star review of the Manchester show, and a detailed review of the London show. Apparently Fatboy Slim called a Mali trip "like the greatest ever edition of Later ... with Jools." Which is close but not quite right. It's better than that. The London show was more like a live 5-hour mashup-style remix. Like Girl Talk played by 50 live musicians jamming.
In any case, thanks to Damon Albarn and Ian Birrell and all of the artists for making it all happen.
This audience-shot video gives a bit of a taste (HT: Matt).