This disc offers 22 tracks from the man once known as the Ehtiopian James Brown. Like the others in the series, the music here is funk-tinged with Armenian overtones. Like most of the other volumes, this one is a stone blast all the way through. Eshete was a soul singer in the classic tradition. He didn't so much sing to his audience as seduce it, working himself and his fans into a sweat-soaked frenzy. Fans of the series might remember this man from Volume 8. If you liked the sound of that, give this a try. If you haven't been hipped to this series yet, there are worse places to start. This disc is a perfect example of what the rest of the series has to offer; ferocious horns, groovy guitar licks and a definite Mideast influence that reminds one of the early days of rai, back before they discovered the synthesizer. Anyone with a passion for funk or the sound of '70s Africa should pick up this set.
Ethiopiques, Vol. 9: Alemayehu Eshete 1969-1974 Review
by Rob Ferrier