Sunday, March 16, 2014

CD Review: Malawi Mouse Boys' 'Dirt Is Good'

Malawi Mouse Boys
Dirt Is Good
IRL Records

Discovered by Grammy-winning record producer, Ian Brennan (of Tinariwen and Lucinda Williams-fame), the Malawi Mouse Boys perform fifteen upllifting, Christian songs written and sung in the Chichewa language. These are not your typical gospel or worship hymns, as the rudimentary guitar, drums, and assorted instrumentation suggest an earthy, primitive, and organic concoction of tunes. The vocals and instrumentation come through clearly and the melodies are strong. The vocal harmonies on "Kufanana" suggest a Ladysmith Black Mambazo influence without any instrumental accompaniment. A gritty electric guitar on "Zochita Zanu" showcase a bit of grunge elements and a great rhythm. "Ndiyamika" is a peppy little tune with a catchy vocal set and light percussion. Overall, Malawi Mouse Boys make a positive impact to the world music scene in Africa and beyond. Enjoy this one! ~ Matthew Forss

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