Grooves unlike anything else you've ever heard in your life – an assortment of mid 70s tunes from Mahmoud Ahmed, the second grooviest Ethiopian artist, next to Mulatu! Ahmed's sound is a lot more out there than Mulatu's – less funky and jazz-based, and more in the mode of snakey rhythms, complicated guitar parts, and vocals that have a melancholy quality that's simply amazing. This set features tunes that recently appeared on volume 7 of the Ethiopiques CD series – but which are presented here in the format of the original 1975 LP! Titles include "Ere Mela Mela", "Ohoho Gedama", "Tezeta", "Abbay Mado", "Atawurulegn Lela", and "Endenesh Gedawo". LP, Vinyl record album
Yekte ... LP Pharaway Sounds (Spain), Early 70s. New Copy ....
Unusual sounds from Alpay – an artist who perfectly shows the unique east/west crossroads that ran through the Iranian scene of the 70s! At one level, Alpay's as Western as you might guess from his look on the cover – and attempts here to serve up rockish tracks aimed at the mainstream – but his music is also heavy on plenty of older Eastern elements too – unusual inflections on the vocals, exotic instrumentation alongside electronic, and a really compelling style that sounds both ancient and futuristic at the same time! There's a budding spiritualism that seems to seep out around the corners of more conventional song structures – and the blend definitely echoes some of the best modes of the Turkish scene of the same time. The package features a very well-selected batch of Alpay recordings from the early 70s, complete with notes – and titles include "Bak Kalbim", "Akca Kizlar", "Can Karagozlum", "Ask Boyledir", "Suna", and "Denizciler". LP, Vinyl record album
Roy Ayers in a very Afro-styled mode – working here on his own after a famous collaboration with Fela Kuti – in a set that's filled with the same sort of hard-driving Afro-Funk grooves that you'd find in Fela's classic recordings! The songs are shorter than Fela's, and with more of Roy's usual smooth jazzy production style – but the overall influence is very much in the Afro-Funk vein, and the album's sort of a "part 2" to the Music Of Many Colors set that was cut a few years before. William Allen worked on the record with Roy – playing choppy Afro-Funk bass, and arranging and producing a lot of the material with Roy and Jaymz Bedford – and the record also features a host of extra percussion players, as well as some vocals by the lovely Sylvia Striplin. Includes the great groover "Africa, Center Of The World", plus "The River Niger", and a great remake of "Third Eye", which was on Everybody Loves The Sunshine, but is redone here with a heavier sound! Other tracks include "There's A Masterplan", "I'll Just Keep Trying", and "Destination Motherland". LP, Vinyl record album
Not what you might expect when shopping for African music – unique electronic sounds from Cameroon musician Francis Bebey – as heavy on keyboards as other 70s work is on guitar! There's still plenty of acoustic elements in the mix though, too – lots of earthy percussion at the bottom, which links some of these tracks to other styles of the time – even though some of the more unusual tunes here have these great electronic sounds that almost feel like they came from the late 70s German underground! The mix of modes is breathtaking – as if Moebius and Roedelius recorded with musicians from Lagos – shaking off the colder sounds of the Conny Plank side of the spectrum, to come up with a warm new style that's really unique! Titles include "La Condition Masculine", "Sahle", "The Coffee Cola Song", "Super Jingle", "Pygmy Love Song", "Agatha", "Catching Up", and "Divorce Pygmee". LP, Vinyl record album
(2LPs – and a very nice package!)
Chimen Ta La ... LP Leritage (France), 1983. New Copy 2 LP Gatefold (reissue)....
A really unique little record – and one with a trans-Atlantic heritage too! The sounds here are all from Martinique, but are heavy in African roots as well – and offer up a criss-crossing of rhythmic and tropical modes that's mighty unique! The grooves have some vocals, but are often mostly focused on the instrumental interplay – some great percussion that moves at a very skittish pace – topped with these guitar lines that are both light and jagged, and which have a pulsing rhythmic intensity that's pretty darn hypnotic! Horns are nice, and get some great solos too – and there's a quality the record that's both airy and deep at the same time. Titles include "Chimen Ta La", "Bochet", "Ansinel", "Flabo Pep La", "Omaj Pou Danyel", and "Endepandans". LP, Vinyl record album
Groovy Eastern sounds from John Berberian – a musician we know from more rockish projects, but who steps out here on a relatively traditional set of tunes! As you'd guess from the title, Berberian's instrument is the oud – that weird stringed instrument we probably know best from Ahmed Abdul-Malik's jazz experiments of the early 60s, used here by John in styles that are much more in keeping with its Middle Eastern roots. The rhythms draw from Turkish, Armenian, and Arabic inspiration – and other instruments on the record include finger cymbals, clarinet, bongos, guitar, and assorted percussion. Most number features vocals sung in a haunting sort of tone – and tunes include "Rast Taksim", "Yarus", "Sevasda", "Savgulum", "Sevan 5/4", and "Azziza". LP, Vinyl record album