Friday, 17 June 2016
Too many times already this year, not least the past few days, it's been difficult to find a ready excuse to smile. So to leave a gig on Tuesday evening with my jaw aching just as much as my legs, was a real treat for the soul. I can't remember the last non-comedy show I saw that had me continuously beaming from ear to ear, quite as much as Congolese six piece Mbongwana Star did. The band's debut album, 'From Kinshasa', made my long-list at the end of 2015 and they are still out there promoting it in a truly joyous fashion. Guitarist Jean Claude (aka R9) appeared to be the musical director, keeping things gloriously tight but loose, while occasionally lurching into wildly off-kilter, Tony Iommi-esque solos. Meanwhile, Theo Nzonza, one of two wheel-chaired vocalists, was a blur, busting moves that put this able-bodied old fool to shame - '...is good?....is good...?' Theo repeatedly asked us in broken English. The roar of the audience's reply required no translation. Catch them if you can.
For the many or for the few? You decide. Part Chimp - You Decide
A free-streaming tune? A pre-release download? A lead track? Or perhaps, an instant gratification song? What does one properly call a rad...
Just as Roger Moore would later be my 007 and Tom Baker my Dr Who, so, a few years earlier, Adam West was my Batman. It's interestin...
The artist's sketchbook. The author's first draft. The filmmaker's rough cut. Very few artistic creations arrive fully formed...
Every now and then, I like to take a look around at what's going down, musically speaking, down under. Last year I was rewarded for m...