STYLE: World RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 130947-19589 LABEL: Strut STRUT089CD FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
Born in 1936, singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer Ebo Taylor is regarded as one of the most influential and important figures in his native Ghana's music scene thanks to a career spanning over half a century. His latest internationally-distributed release on Strut Records sees Taylor's work continue to reach further afield in this stunning example of Afro-beat, funk and jazz mixed with traditional Fante songs sung in the native tongue. In the likes of "Ayesama" and "Nsu Na Kwan", Taylor and his band offer up a hypnotic series of driving rhythms which take indigenous African beats and turn them into something more accessible and altogether wonderful - largely thanks to the inclusion of a punchy brass section and other blues/jazz leanings. Stripped-back numbers such as "Yaa Amponsah" and "Barrima" - the latter an exposed song of sorrow for the death of Taylor's first wife - showcase the singer's characteristic voice whilst adding variety and depth to the album. Liner notes hint at Taylor's faith on tracks like "Abonsam" - a warning to shun the Devil and seek God's protection - and "Assomdwee" which refers to God's creation of man to make this a deeply spiritual piece of work as well as a musically breathtaking one.
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