Sunday, February 27, 2011

LP Review: K. Frimpong's Ghanaian Highlife

K. Frimpong & His Cubano Fiestas [vinyl]

K. Frimpong & His Cubano Fiestas

Continental Records

The four-song vinyl release by the late-K. Frimpong is a testament to his energetic, Ghanaian highlife music originally from the 1970's Ofo Bros. label. The vinyl edition is released by Secret Stash Records out of Minneapolis, MN. Vocalist K. Frimpong is backed by his Cubano Fiestas orchestra of fourteen members on vocals, guitars, drums, congas, piano, trumpet, synth, sax, and percussion. The faster paced rhythms and psychedelic textures border on palm wine music from Africa's Western coast. Though not structurely too dissimilar, palm wine guitar music developed earlier and was so-named due to frequent imbibing of palm wine made from palm tree flower sap. Nevertheless, K. Frimpong is as addictive as palm wine. Side 2 only contains one track: "Adam Nana (Medley)", which is a fourteen-minute romp through the Ghanaian jungle of sounds that are spectacular at the very least. The three other five-to-eight-minute tracks on Side 1 represent K. Frimpong's awe-inspiring, highlife beats that can only seem to come out of West Africa. If Ghanaian highlife is what you are craving, then look no further than K. Frimpong and His Cubana Fiestas. ~ Matthew Forss

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