The Semi Colon – Ndia Egbuo Ndia (Afro-Jigida)

Uchenna Ikonne runs ‘Comb & Razor’, the New York based label specialising in Nigerian re-issues. Last year Uchenna took over the infamous ‘Lagos Disco Inferno‘ clubnight from Voodoo Funk‘s very own Frank Gossner (mentioned on the site both here and here), however is perhaps best known for his label’s previous release ‘Brand New Wayo‘.

The latest release from the Comb & Razor label is a more guitar based, psychedelic affair. Whilst I would like to go to greater lengths explaining ‘The Semi-Colon’s’ style the guys over at ‘This is Africa’ have done a much more thorough job than I ever could, so if you are interested do head over to the site to learn more about it. More specifically:

”According to Uchenna, the band recorded the album as an experimental response to Fela Kuti’s then-dominant Afro-beat sound, substituting Fela’s sophisticated horn charts and jazz leanings with wiry electric guitar work and a passion for vintage rock ‘n’ roll.”

What I will say is that the psych-rock sound that came out of Africa (most notably Nigeria and Zambia) is just as interesting as any Highlife or Afrobeat era material. In m opinion perhaps the most fascinating aspect of listening to music made on the other side of the world by a different generation is its relationship with the western music that influenced it, and also the sounds that followed (or vice versa).

Perhaps my favourite track on the LP is the opener, entitled ‘Ndia Egbuo Ndia’. However anybody with a passing interest in the myriad of African re-issues that have appeared this century may also recognise ‘Isi Agboncha’ (on this album) and ‘Nekwaha’ (another of ‘Semi’Colon’s’ tracks which is not on this LP) from previous re-issues.

As always, if you like what you have heard or read here, please do show your appreciation the right way and pick up your own copy.


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