It was thanks to Soundway Records that I discovered The Funkees late last year and I am thanking them again tonight for their latest release, for this is a true Funkees-fest!!!
For this offering Soundway Records haven’t featured just one track by The Funkees on a compilation album, they have gathered 18 monster afro-rock corkers and put them all onto one superb record entitled, Dancing Time: The Best of Eastern Nigeria’s Afro Rock Exponents 1973 – 77. These 18 slices of funky Afro-rock grooves have been hand-picked by Soundway’s Miles Cleret, taken from a selection of the bands 45’s and two LP’s.
The Funkees formed in Nigeria in the late 1960’s, emerging at a time when their country was at civil war. Specialising in a brand of funky, upbeat afro-rock dance music, their sound became a staple part of the Nigerian psychedelic rock scene, paving the way for artists such as Fela Kuti to follow in the early 70’s. Dedicated to the music, The Funkees often played through the night, performing seven days a week and soon became the number-one band in East Nigeria. Making a name for themselves, it wasn’t long before UK promoters came calling and The Funkees packed up their instruments and moved to London where they quickly established a fierce reputation on the live circuit. Here they recorded two major albums before breaking up in 1977 amidst some controversy.
The album features (for the first time ever) all of the bands Nigerian 45’s, as well as material from their UK albums..AND…yes, there is more, this release is also accompanied by a full interview with original member Sonny Akpan, who still lives London!!!..just when you think it couldn’t get more funkee!!!
I love this sound! I love the vibrancy, the rawness, the sheer funk of it all, the beats and rhythm and the way it makes you want freak out and move…It was hard to pick a song from this collection but Slipping Into Darkness has got some cutting percussion, mean bass and guitar, plus tons of soulful vocals…it’s a smasher alright!
Check it out above and order your copy of the album (released 4 days ago) from here.
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