Kweku of Ghana – Zone 6, Agege (Heavenly Sweetness)
So Kweku is the frontman of my #1 Afrobeat band of 2021: Onipa. This year, he released a new album under the name Kweku of Ghana, and so I was immediately drawn to it. Zone 6, Agege has a more traditional, folkloric, funky, reggaeish Afrobeat sound than the Afrofuturistic synthy Onipa. That’s neither a pro nor a con, as I love both sounds equally, but that’s just to set different expectations for when you listen to this. This is a beautiful, intimate, inspired, authentic album that truly speaks of Kweku’s… Read more
What if you mixed wonky beats hip-hop, jazz, and AAL-style compositions and technique? Well, you get Sinularia. The unique character of the music that’s shown on Subwater Beats is utterly fascinating. The band consists of a drummer, a double bassist, and an electric guitarist. All of them seem very fond of effect pedals and post-production shenanigans. Regarding the composition, the songs move from one section to the next like tides ebb and flow, and it’s a real rhythmic challenge at times to decipher what’s going on. It’s real fun when bands make rhythm their main focus,… Read more
The Ceccaldi name is a promise of great music. On this album, both brothers collaborate with two Ethiopian singers from Addis Ababa to make a modern fusion of Ethiopian pop and jazz fusion. Everything is solidly backed up by drummer Cyril Atef, who’s previously played on other incredible albums, as with Bumcello. It’s an album made to groove, dance, and have a terribly fun time. The drums feel aptly Afrobeatish in essence most of the time, while the harmonization is walking the thin line between authentic and experimental. It’s a truly superb album!
Welcome to the first of this year’s best of lists, curated by yours truly! As you might have noticed by now, this year is going to be separated by genre, or style, or attribute… it’s rather inconsistent between categories! On top of that, some categories are rather spread-out within themselves! I mean, there’s more than one kind of “hardcore” music out there for example, and I’m trying my best to keep my categories straight, but it’s often difficult to decide in which category such and such album should go, especially with the miscegenous music I usually listen to! Nevertheless, in … Read more