West African funk outfit Orchestre Poly-Rythmo will release their first album in two decades next March, entitled Cotonou Club.
Hailed by the New York Times as belonging "on the very short list of the world's greatest funk bands," Orchestre Poly-Rhythmo have been an influential force for more than four decades, though they just played their first European concert last year. The group enjoyed massive popularity throughout Africa during much of the '70s, touring the continent and often sharing the stage with legends like Fela Kuti and Angelique Kidjo (the latter of whom appears on the new album). In the '80s, political oppression and economic decline forced the group underground, not to be heard from from outside of Africa for nearly 30 years.
Meanwhile, West African music became popular in Europe, and Poly-Rhythmo's records garnered connoisseur appeal. In 2007, a French journalist discovered them still performing in Benin and decided to help arrange a series of comeback gigs in Europe and New York, after which they reentered the studio.
Cotonou Club will see release on the !K7 sub-label Strut. The album features new compositions as well as new version of old tunes, all of which were recorded in Paris on vintage and analog equipment. The band will tour Europe beginning in April of next year.
01. Ne Te Faches Pas
03. Von Vo Nono
04. Gbeti Madjro feat. Angelique Kidjo
06. Koumi Dede
07. Ma Vie
08. Mariage / Ou C'est feat. Fatoumata Diawara
Strut will release Cotonou Club on March 19th, 2011.