Published Nov 20, 2015There was a curious prophesy about the invasion and subsequent destruction of Tibet that centred on the fact that the country's tragic past was a crucial part of spreading the Dharma (Buddhist teaching) through the rest of the world (particularly the West) via the exile of the Tibetan monks. And while the reason African expats forming Afrobeat and highlife bands in the West doesn't come close to the cultural genocide of Tibet, there is a powerful parallel with the spreading of the groove and positivism of Mother Africa to where it was needed most.
On Kondona, Elikeh manages to stick to the relaxed and flowing groves that made King Sunny Ade's highlife trances so powerful. A lot of has to do with an adherence to the sounds and forms of trade highlife and Afrobeat which, while treading a fine line between reverence and nostalgia, the band trade with great effect.
The interlocking grooves are clear and uncluttered, and singer/guitarist Massama Dogo sings with a straightforward conviction that locks with the instruments nicely. This EP holds a lot of promise. (Ropeadope)