12 Songs, 1 Hour 4 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The third volume in Luaka Bop’s World Psychedelic Classics series (David Byrne, curator) comes with an eminently descriptive title: Love’s a Real Thing: Funky Fuzzy Sounds From West Africa. One listen to the clamorous Afro-Beat contained within and you realize that those sonorous “Funky & Fuzzy” descriptors mean what they say. Love’s a Real Thing is a take no prisoners delivery of wild and deranged sounds from the musically fertile milieu of early ‘70s West Africa. The musicians featured on the album made music that was boldly experimental, bracingly contemporary and stridently political. Uncompromising tracks like the wild, fuzz-choked battle cry of Ofo & the Black Company’s “Allah Wakbarr” and the sinuous, challenging funk of the Orchestre Poly-Rhythmo’s “Minsato Le, Mi Dayihome” give the listener a vibrant picture of West African life in the psychedelic era; the burgeoning night-clubs full of aspiring James Browns competing for floor space, the unrelenting beat, and the birth of political consciousness. Love’s A Real Thing is more than a compilation of superlative music; it's a compelling document of an overlooked moment in African musical history.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The third volume in Luaka Bop’s World Psychedelic Classics series (David Byrne, curator) comes with an eminently descriptive title: Love’s a Real Thing: Funky Fuzzy Sounds From West Africa. One listen to the clamorous Afro-Beat contained within and you realize that those sonorous “Funky & Fuzzy” descriptors mean what they say. Love’s a Real Thing is a take no prisoners delivery of wild and deranged sounds from the musically fertile milieu of early ‘70s West Africa. The musicians featured on the album made music that was boldly experimental, bracingly contemporary and stridently political. Uncompromising tracks like the wild, fuzz-choked battle cry of Ofo & the Black Company’s “Allah Wakbarr” and the sinuous, challenging funk of the Orchestre Poly-Rhythmo’s “Minsato Le, Mi Dayihome” give the listener a vibrant picture of West African life in the psychedelic era; the burgeoning night-clubs full of aspiring James Browns competing for floor space, the unrelenting beat, and the birth of political consciousness. Love’s A Real Thing is more than a compilation of superlative music; it's a compelling document of an overlooked moment in African musical history.

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Ratings and Reviews

3.8 out of 5
12 Ratings

12 Ratings

fromthetop ,

Funky and raw grooves you didn't know existed

Richly atmospheric and funky, this collection benefits for the slightly raw-sounding production on many songs, although the crisp sound of "Ceddo End Title" adds to its intimate intensity. Hearing this album is like being in a gritty club late at night in Africa in the 70's (though I can't personally vouch for it), after the glitterati have left and the live band is grooving at its hardest. These are musicians and tunesmiths of the highest order, making this a highly danceable and vital album that has real cultural roots. Guitar, bass, keyboards, sax, xylophone (it's gotta be!) and drums create a spare yet propulsive mix that's a far cry from the lush strings- and brass-supported sound of Motown. There are enough strictly instrumental stretches that when the vocals (very good, if mostly non-English) kick in, the band is still at the heart of the tuneful proceedings. Highlights include the insistently soulful "Love's a Real Thing", and "Better Change Your Mind". If "Minsato Le, Mi Dayihome" and "Allah Wakbarr" don't get you dancing in your apartment, nothing will.

pasteyface ,

World Psy Classics 3

it's got it all.
better change your mind and ifa are true keepers that belong in all music libraries
fonque !

AKbirdman ,

Must have!

Buy this album and rejoice! Highly danceable, funky stuff. The iTunes review sums up what to expect in the sound pretty aptly; the best of American funk/ roots (black) rock filtered through West African experiences. This has been in pretty heavy rotation for me since I found it on here 6-8 months ago. If you are tied up in what's on the radio/ having to understand the language of the lyrics, this is likely not for you, but if dig funk or have eclectic tastes, this is a great find.

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