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Osibisa - Woyaya CD (album) cover

WOYAYA

Osibisa

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.10 | 55 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars The second album from Osibisa picks up where their stunning debut had left it, and goes a step further. Still produced by Tony Visconti and also doned with a stupendous Roger Dean artwork, there are few minor line-up changes but nothing that changed the band's superb sound.

Thunder and lightning opens up the first side and the track evolves with a superb flutes and slow African chants, before gradually picking up speed via their infectious conga beats. A constant progression leading to ecstasy, this song is real master strike and probably their peak in their lengthy discography. Coming up next is Y Sharp with its infernal rhythms and Fender Rhodes, and great guitars. Spirits Up Above ( a Holand Rasshaan Kirk cover) has a slow divinities invocation chants intro and soon develops into a frenzied and transient fast groove, making you wonder about that voodoo stuff. Survival is where these guys really come loose and let their African influences reeling down your brains before the tracks engage is some killer jazz-rock with spine-chilling chants and superb brass section providing the dramatic impact, breaks, counterpoints and a Coltrane-influenced sax solo. I have yet to meet someone that did not fall for these guys and no proghead should resist. Their joy and enthusiasm is so communicative that even KKK members would love it. Move On is almost explanatory, and hovers between Santana and African jazz. Rabiatu is yet another supeb moment where the flute dominates the speedy rhythms and great chants, interrupted by a percussive break when some whistles announces a great crescendo. Up last is the title track, another one of those signature tracks, which they played throughout their whole career, but it is a sing- along and of a lesser interest to progheads.

Although after this stunning album, Osibisa will change musical direction (but gradually so), they will become more commercial but also more downright African at times and will have an international hit in Sunshine Day in 76, but always retain certain integrity until the end of the decade. If you should want to investigate them further, I cab only advise you to work chronologically.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |

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