“The Pride Of Africa” by Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - album review

« album.png » (Amagugu, album # 2)
« album.png (Intuthuko Brothers, album # ?)

TJR says

Amagugu’s “Ubhek’uZulu” was well received by myself in my album chart of 1974. The second offering from the quintet, a round-up of single sides from the last 2 or 3 years, is even better. Luckily (or perhaps thoughtfully), only “Mngane Wami” repeats from the debut LP and therefore there is no problem in attaining “A-list” status in my reckoning. The backing band, The Intuthuko Brothers, also appear on my charts for the second time, following on from their instrumental offering, “Tomorrow’s Wedding”, which was also delivered in ’74. Once again Sannah Mnguni leads the group splendidly, and the project must be dear to her heart as she pens 8 of the 12 numbers here. The album whizzes through five fast-paced numbers on side 1, with no drop in quality whatsoever. My first disappointment comes at the tail end of the side with the soul ballad “Thula Mtwana”; as ever in their neck of the woods it’s a pale derivative of the sound cultivated and perfected by the masters of the art, the African-Americans. Side 2 has all the very best tracks, the first of which “Wamuhle Thekwane” (“Beautiful Cranes”) presumably extols the virtues of the national bird of South Africa as opposed to glorifying the shifting of great concrete slabs across building sites. It’s a skippy little number penned by Sannah, as is the rip-roaring “Ukuhlupheka Kwami” (“My Suffering”) which steals my heart – it seems I’m drawn to songs of suffering in languages I can’t even understand. Weird. The very best is saved ‘til last with the thoroughly extraordinary piece, “Isithabathaba Segoli” (“Shopping in Johannesburg”), as Africa interprets dosey doe, soulfully. It’s a gospel hoe-down to reckon with and it’s quite magnificent. The strange title seems at odds with the rural vibe, so perhaps this lies at the heart of the point being made. The good news is you can download this LP for free from Electric Jive, so see what you think yourself. Get it here.

The Jukebox Rebel
09-Jul-2014


A1 [02:17] 7.4.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Siyadudula (Sannah Mnguni, Titus Masikane) Africana
A2 [02:28] 7.0.png Amagugu - Mngane Wami (Titus Masikane) Africana
A3 [02:54] 7.2.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Nomvula (Sannah Mnguni) Africana
A4 [02:44] 7.1.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Lentombazane (Sannah Mnguni) Africana
A5 [02:50] 7.0.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Isango Lisa Vuliwe (Gwinitshe) Africana
A6 [02:42] 4.9.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Thula Mtwana (Sannah Mnguni) Soul Ballad
B1 [02:44] 7.7.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Wamuhle Thekwane (Sannah Mnguni, T. E. Nene) Africana
B2 [03:06] 5.5.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Uyozikhethela (Sannah Mnguni) Africana
B3 [02:56] 7.0.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Umendo Awuthu Gundane (Sannah Mnguni) Africana
B4 [02:32] 7.8.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Ukuhlupheka Kwami (Sannah Mnguni) Africana
B5 [02:32] 7.5.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Bophani Imithwalo (M. Twala) Africana
B6 [02:42] 8.5.png Amagugu with The Intuthuko Brothers - Isithabathaba Segoli (Gwinitshe) Africana




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