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Black Diamond

Black Diamond by Buraka Som Sistema
Released: Nov 2008
Label: Fabric Worldwide
Buraka Som Sistema's debut album is an energetic testament to the possibilities of kuduro, but it's also a rousing good time on its own terms. You don't need a degree in ethnomusicology to be swayed by the immediacy of these cuts, which put samplers and drum machines in the service of headlong, rollicking, dancehall-indebted rhythms, while buzzing synthesizers and chanted vocals weave a hypnotic, man-machine spell. Where else can you get rave stabs, sirens, bionic congas and Auto-Tuned Eastern modalities all in one? Beat freaks rejoice: this is Holy Grail-caliber stuff.
Philip Sherburne