Various Artists

Afro-Rock, Vol. 1

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The title of this compilation is a little misleading. There's not a lot of rock here; it's more of a collection of funky workouts like one would expect from a land and a time firmly under the thrall of Fela and James Brown. That being said, the music here is terrific, full of extended workouts that will please ears open to Funkadelic, the Bar-Kays, and the Meters, but always leavened with a heaping helping of the sounds of the motherland. The sounds are raw, the grooves are tight, and the record as a whole is a magnificent testament to the fact that Africa had and has music to please people other than ethnographers.

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