Genre:Afro Pop
Catalogue Number:CDRW71
Release Date:1998-06-01
Review:Born in the city formerly known as Leopoldville back when the former Zaire was known as the Belgian Congo, Papa Wemba was on the leading edge of soukous music in the 1970s. He was a pivotal member of the trailblazing Zaiko Langa Langa and later formed Viva La Musica and his own ensembles. In 1993, Wemba renamed his band Molokai, and that name and band make this newest Papa Wemba CD both an aggregation of his past and a new exploration. Wemba delves into an a cappella tune, placing his soaring vocals at the immediate heart of the CD. But then the music churns in, veering between hip, urban dance styles that mesh European pop elements, Wemba's acrobatic vocal techniques and soukous' rumba-fueled rhythms. Molokai also throws truly rock- powered hooks and textures, too, newly energizing Wemba's music without taking away from the layered rhythms