Orchestre Poly-Rythmo Echos Hypnotiques Vol. 2

There are sustained stretches to this compilation when you'd swear you're listening to the best band in the world. This is the third compilation of Benin's Orchestre Poly-Rythmo and it is the best. This disc chronicles records done for the Albarika Store label between 1969 and '79. In contrast to Analaog Africa's first comp, in which the band were heard recorded on inferior equipment, these better-funded recordings practically jump out of the speakers. The authority of the rhythm section is such that on several tracks the drummer has the power of John Bonham, with the jazzy precision of Clyde Stubblefield. The first track, an effortless 6/8 cruncher, features meaty horns riding those rugged drums to dance floor heaven. There's a variety of rhythms, from the punchy garage rock of "Noude Ma Gnin Tche De Me" to the rumbadelic "Zizi." Even after three discs this band still surprise with their versatility, and when they've hit their stride, their hard grooving majesty is bound to ensnare bodies on any dance floor. (Analog Africa)