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World Music CD Reviews Africa


By Tom Orr
Published October 31, 2005

Nyboma et Kamale Dynamique
Stern's Africa

Before Congolese rumba morphed into soukous, its popularity through the whole of Africa led to it being influenced and enriched by music from elsewhere on the continent. Such was evident in the work of singer Nyboma Mwan'dido, who emerged around the same time as Sam Mangwana and had a similar way of sweetening the classic Congolese style. Nowadays Nyboma is part of the rightly-acclaimed supergroup Kekele, but this terrific disc is comprised of early-to-mid '80s tracks laid down with his original band Kamale Dynamique. The songs show the impact that styles such as highlife and makossa had on the Zairean sound as well as the nascent stages of the relocation to Paris that modernized the Congolese recording scene. A best-of-all-worlds feel is thus present on these joyous, instantly engaging songs, with Nyboma's bright vocals perfectly framed by bubbling grooves, fluid lead and rhythm guitars and subtly blazing horns. Small wonder that Nyboma was one of the first Congolese artists marketed beyond Africa- this stuff sounds like it could set the whole world dancing.