Beware the Fetish

Beware the Fetish

by Kasai AllstarsKasai Allstars


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Congolese collective Kasai Allstars' epically titled 2008 debut In the 7th Moon, The Chief Turned Into a Swimming Fish and Ate the Head of His Enemy by Magic was a joyous triumph. The third installment of the Congotronics series, the album stood out from the rest of the catalog in its broad spectrum of interweaving styles and instrumentation derived from the intersection of roughly two-dozen musicians from different parts of the region, all with their own culture, language, and approach to music. The hybridized sounds implemented traditional Kasai instruments like xylophone and likembe, as well as crudely amplified guitar, presenting an overflowing cornucopia of sounds melted together from the players' various perspectives. Second proper Kasai Allstars album and fifth installation of the Congotronics series Beware the Fetish both follows the boisterous energy of the group's debut and expands upon it generously. For starters, the 12 tracks here stretch out for over 100 minutes. This wealth of music often builds into a hypnotic and beautiful tapestry of polyrhythms and softy repetitive guitar patterns as on "Yangye, The Evil Leopard." The distorted thumb pianos, makeshift percussion instruments, and fuzzy signals from broken-sounding amplifiers gel nicely with call-and-response vocals and traditional drumming informed by the various ritualistic celebrations of the musicians' separate cultures, which are often feared or hated by religious groups in the band's home of Kinshasa. Traditional ritualistic chants meet with modernized arrangements and themes throughout the album, as with the rolling soukous guitar that begins "He Who Makes Bush Fires for Others," an ecstatic tune that builds with group vocals and increasing layers of intensity over its 11 minutes. Production is skillfully handled, as with all the Congotronics releases, by series founder Vincent Kenis, who captures both the rugged and sublime elements of the band in high definition. Beware the Fetish lacks some of the overstated grit and blown-out feel of other Congotronics releases, but by no means suffers from this distinction. Instead of just relying on hyper-saturated sounds and colors, the lengthy statements here strive for something deeper and less immediately understandable. The album rolls along with a meditative, confident feeling, morphing into a bright dream-like celebration in its many various peaks.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/24/2014
Label: Crammed Disc Us
UPC: 0876623006916
catalogNumber: 233
Rank: 191446

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Kasai Allstars   Primary Artist
Vincent Kenis   Bass Guitar,Guest Appearance
John Dietrich   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Juana Molina   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Menga   Guest Appearance,Likembe
Greg Saunier   Drums,Guest Appearance
Ed Rodriguez   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Matt Mehlan   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Satomi Matsuzaki   Bass Guitar,Guest Appearance
Muambuyi   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Kabongo Tshisensa   Vocals,Guest Appearance,Likembe,Group Member
Mariam Wallentin   Background Vocals,Guest Appearance
Andreas Werliin   Drums,Guest Appearance
Kalenga Ditu   Vocals,Likembe,Group Member
Ndofusu Mbiyavanga   Tam-tam,Guest Appearance
Mbuyamba Nyunyi   Vocals,Likembe,Group Member
Visi Vincent   Drums,Guest Appearance
Mawangu Mingiedi   Guest Appearance,Likembe
Yempongo Kadiya   Vocals,Dancer,Group Member
Tshimanga Muamba   Vocals,Guest Appearance,Group Member
Tandjolo Yatshi   Vocals,African Drums,Guest Appearance,Group Member
Symphorien   Bottle,Guest Appearance
Otayemba Osomba   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Okama Yetsha   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Ntumba "Muambuyi" Ngalula   Vocals,Group Member
Nshinga "Kanku" Wa Buanda   Vocals,Dancer,Group Member
Ngoyi Peuple   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Ngoyi Nkishi   Tam-tam,Guest Appearance
Ngangu Tiabakuau Sébastien   Bass Guitar,Guest Appearance
Ngalula Ndaye Sylvie   Vocals,Dancer,Group Member
Mulembue Tambue   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Mugayi   Tam-tam,Guest Appearance
Mputi "Mi Amor" Ebondo   Vocals,Group Member
Mopero Mupemba   Guitar,Electric Guitar,Guest Appearance,Group Member
Mokonkole Diesel   Guest Appearance
Mbuyamba Nyunyi   Guest Appearance,Lokole
Mbiya   Guest Appearance,Likembe
Mbikayi   Guest Appearance
Mbaka Kokanya   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Manda   Vocals,Guest Appearance,Likembe
Lukasa   Vocals,Guest Appearance,Likembe
Kayembe Tshikombo   Xylophone,Guest Appearance
Kayembe "Voix D'Or" Muteyi Dinda   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Kalonji Kandi   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Kabundi Mukengeshayi   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Kabese "Bondis" Ngandu   Vocals,Group Member
Kabambi   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Kabadi Nalembo   Vocals,Guest Appearance,Likembe
Djo Mayo   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Didi Bafuafua   Xylophone,Group Member
Bosio Tokala Mamie   Vocals,Dancer,Group Member
Bangingela Kabamba   Tam-tam,Guest Appearance
Bakatupidia Donat   Guitar,Guest Appearance
Grand Prêtre Kalubi   Vocals,Group Member
Baila Tshilumba   Xylophone,Guest Appearance,Group Member

Technical Credits

Vincent Kenis   Producer,Engineer,Cover Photo,Back Cover Photo
Kasai Allstars   Arranger,Composer
Kabongo Tshisensa   Composer
McCloud Zicmuse   Artwork
Tshimanga Muamba   Composer
Tandjolo Yatshi   Composer
Mulembue Tambue   Composer
Mputi "Mi Amor" Ebondo   Composer,Lyric Transcription
Kabese "Bondis" Ngandu   Composer
Benoît Van Maele   Inside Photo
Grand Prêtre Kalubi   Composer
Baila Tshilumba   Composer

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