Peekaboo Records
Africa Boogaloo - The Latinization of West Africa / 2LP

Africa Boogaloo - The Latinization of West Africa / 2LP

20 EUR
One of the best international compilations that I heard this year was Tumbélé, which examined the impact of African music on the Caribbean.  Africa Boogalo is its logical counterpoint, providing ample evidence that the vigorous cultural exchange of the mid-twentieth century yielded equally stunning results on the other side of the ocean (though not without a certain degree of weirdness).
Africa has certainly been anthologized to death recently, but this is one of the best attempts I’ve heard thus far. There is certainly some brazen cultural appropriation occurring here, but the songs are almost invariably excellent (especially those by Orchestre OK Jazz, who fill nearly a quarter of the album). Latin-Afro fusions can get pretty frenetic, cluttered, and over-the-top at times, but Africa Boogaloo’s two compilers (Mark Wimmers and Mark Ainley) have wisely kept the focus on simmering, laid-back grooves, making for an album that holds up extremely well with repeated listens. They also have an ear for great guitar playing, and Africa had some of the best guitarists around in the ‘60s and ‘70s.
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