Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou
Volume Three – The Skeletal Essences of Afro Funk 1969-1980 (Analog Africa AACD 073CD, 2013)
The superb Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou from Benin has gained a well-deserved reputation as one of the finest acts from West Africa in past decades. The analog label has been reissuing some of the best material by these masters of rhythm. The label released two compilations that were very well received, The Vodoun Effect (AACD 064CD/AALP 064LP, 2008) and Echos Hypnotiques (AACD 066CD/AALP 066LP, 2009). Now we get a third compilation with rare material that will please the band’s increasing number of fans.
The 14 tracks featured in Volume Three – The Skeletal Essences of Afro Funk 1969-1980 have never been released outside of Africa. Some of the songs were recorded using a legendary piece of equipment — a Swiss-made Nagra reel-to-reel recorder and one or two microphones, in private houses or open-air gardens, mostly at night.
Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou included ardent horns , captivating organ and guitar solos, and a vibrant rhythm section: legendary bass player Gustave Bentho and skilled drummer Leopold Yehouessi. The group played a mixture of funk, soul, psychedelia, African roots and Congolese rumba
Volume Three – The Skeletal Essences of Afro Funk 1969-1980 includes a 44-page booklet.
Watch Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou perform “Houzou Houzou Wa”:
Volume Three – The Skeletal Essences of Afro Funk 1969-1980 captures the passionate songs of one of the finest bands that has come out of Benin.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.