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Cotonou Club by Orchestre Poly-Rythmo
Released: Apr 2011
Label: Strut
This Beninese dance band began in the '60s, was beloved in West Africa by the '70s, endured a fallow period in the '80s (due to deaths in the band and economic hardship in Benin), then saw their classic records devoured by global fans in the early 2000s. Now they've released their first new album in decades, which finds the Orchestre doing what they've always done best: breathe fire into funk-fused sounds from Afrobeat to soukous, psychedelic rock to, um, funk. You'll lose yourself in the thick, salty layers of dance-crazed sound: Just ask Angelique Kidjo, who gets down on "Gbeti Madjro."
Rachel Devitt
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