Sunday -- if you can remember through this dreary morning -- was sunny, warm and perfect for this pulsing, rhythmic, impossibly tight Afrobeat masterpiece by Antibalas, a group of Brooklyn kids who sound like they grew up gigging in secret under an oppressive African government.
Someone needs to smack me in the face for only playing this record, released 2007, yesterday.
American music fans usually know some Afrobeat pioneers like Fela Kuti -- and the rock bands like Talking Heads and Can that used some Afrobeat conventions -- but this entire set of breaks and grooves should sound completely new. Anyone with neck fuzz will feel the tingle that accompanies your first experience with something wonderful and unfamiliar.
Those moments are all over this track, which combines the innovative spirit of bop, the power of funk, the counter-rhythms of traditional African music and the brassy excitement of a secret-agent flick. Security is a triumph throughout, the best record I never heard two years ago.
Great background and review here.