Thomas Mapfumo

Chimurenga '98

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You have to hand it to Thomas Mapfumo -- the man is never afraid to keep pushing at the boundaries of his music. On this disc, which features some young talent as part of the Blacks Unlimited, he not only plays his trademark mbira-based chimurgena music, but also casts his net as far as Mali with "Ndiyani Waparadza Musha," a mix that works very smoothly, mixing two African cultures, while "Set the People Free" is really African rock with an English language rap in the middle -- and very good it is. Of course, his basic style forms the heartbeat on tracks like "Tinofara" and "Wandiita Muroyi," with the three mbiras as his rhythm section, the core of his sound. "Chimurenga (The War of Liberation)" reaches out across Africa, and "Sumba Dzenhabvu (The Lions of Soccer)" touches the world with an English-language lyric over a jaunty groove, celebrating the 1998 World Cup. One of the fullest and most diverse albums of Mapfumo's career, it's a sign that he's not going to rest on his laurels and stand still.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 6:08 Spotify
2 6:15 Spotify
3 5:13 Spotify
4 5:12 Spotify
5 6:25 Spotify
6 6:03 Spotify
7 6:07 Spotify
8 6:45 Spotify
9 6:21 Spotify
10 6:21 Spotify
11 4:49 Spotify
12 6:31 Spotify
blue highlight denotes track pick