Monday, January 19, 2009

CD Review: Zambia's Mathew Tembo

Mathew Tembo
Independent Release

Mr. Mathew Tembo, a native of Zambia, Africa, brings us music from a nation rarely heard in other parts of the world. Anthem showcases a unique instrument called the silimba, which is similar in design, sound, and function to the balafon. A few different languages are also represented on the tracks, including nsenga, tonga, bemba, chewa, and nyanja. Mathew provides lead vocals and plays the silimba, keyboards, and bass guitar. Additional musicians play drums, native percussion instruments, sax, trombone, and bongos. Every track is upbeat and rhythmically engaging. One reggae-tinged song, 'Kufuma Kujombo' ('From My Boots'), is an especially beautiful song that lingers in your mind for hours to come. You will find yourself discovering something new each time you listen to the various tracks. Anthem should be on everyone's listening list for the year. ~ Matthew Forss

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