“Iyole ● Mazina” by Kanda Bongo Man - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1981Album Chart of the Decade: 1980s

TJR says

Back at home in the D.R. Congo, Kanda Bongo Man had made a bit of a name for himself with Orchestre Bella Mambo, but made his move in 1979 in order to try and connect with a wider audience, supplementing his income via work in a window-pane factory. As a 26-year-old, his big breakthrough came in 1981 with the release of this first solo long-player, starring the magnificent Diblo Dibala on lead guitar. Diblo was the same age as Kanda, and had followed a similar path to the singer, arriving in Brussels in '79, before himself connecting with the Parisian scene in '81. There seems to be a genuine warmth between the two; Kanda gives a mid-track shout-out of “Diblo” on each and every cut, which almost seems like an apology for not affording him co-billing status in the first place! So well received was Diblo's blistering performance that he became a much sought-after session guitarist, and would appear on countless numbers of long-players for a great many soukous artists, as well as fronting his own group, Loketo. The whole debut set is nothing less than fantastic, glorious sebenes rising to the fore after a couple of minutes of vocal foreplay, each and every time. The rhythms are solid throught, and amazingly exciting when they're allowed to ride free of the lead vocalist. A masterpiece with strength-in-depth.

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [07:32] 9.3.png Kanda Bongo Man - Iyole (Kanda Bongo Man) Africana
A2 [07:38] 8.2.png Kanda Bongo Man - N’sambi-Carol (Kanda Bongo Man) Africana
B1 [07:37] 9.6.png Kanda Bongo Man - Amina (Kanda Bongo Man) Africana
B2 [07:22] 9.0.png Kanda Bongo Man - Mazina (Kanda Bongo Man) Africana

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