Jan 6, 2014

The Witch - “Movin’ On/Kuomboka”


The legendary Zambian band’s disco/boogie years, contains the entirety of their two rare albums: 1980-1984. Out now on Now-Again Deluxe, 2CD on 01.21.14. 

Regular visitors to this site are no strangers to the Zamrock movement from Zambia’s early to mid ’70s, from issues of the likes of WITCH, Rikki Ililonga and Musi-O-Tunya to our association with the Shadoks, Strawberry Rain and Mississipi Records reissues of Paul Ngozi and the Ngozi Family, Amanaz and Salty Dog.

Left out of our Zamrock investigation, for stylistic reasons as well as logistical concerns, were albums released after Zamrock’s heyday, when the music of ‘80s Zambia came to be influenced by disco and rhumba from neighboring Congo. Bands that didn’t adapt sounded outdated. Thus even Zamrock’s greatest band, WITCH, splintered, with a skeleton crew of core members embracing younger musicians to record and release two albums that found the band replacing fuzz guitars with whirling synthesizers and trying their hand at soul, disco and boogie.

The band privately issued two albums – Movin’ On in 1980, Kuomboka in 1984 – in small quantities before a dearth of gigs and the large ensemble’s overhead caused them to disband, sometime in 1985. Though but a decade separated the first and last WITCH albums, the recording capabilities of most nations in sub-Saharan Africa by 1984 had caught up with the rest of the world. Finally, fans of the WITCH’s arch can listen to, and acknowledge, the breadth of this great band and assess for themselves the recordings of both of WITCH’s incarnations.


Here's a preview from our next release (ICE-005), Zambian band Witch's early 80's rarity Movin' On. Known for their psychedelic fuzz masterpiece Lazy Bones, this is another side of Witch. This time around the band created another masterpiece, but this time with a whole new sound capturing the spirit of the early 80's, and changing political atmosphere in Africa with a perfect mix of MJ/Jake Solo boogie, and Fleetwood Mac AOR moves. This is an album in the fullest sense, a snapshot of the group at their creative peak, with stellar musicianship, blending American and African influences and peerless production and synthesizer work by the great Patrick Mwondela. This is the African/Balearic boogie version of Band On The Run:

Tracklis: "Kuomboka"

A1 Erotic Delight
A2 I Can Do Without You
A3 Believer Ma Lover
A4 Kuomboka
B1 Come Together
B2 More Sweat Than Sweet
B3 I Wanna See The Light
B4 Jah Let The Sunshine

Tracklist: "Movin On"

A1 Movin' On 6:22
A2 To Be Felt 4:48
A3 It Was You Boy 4:43
A4 I'm Comin' Back 4:14
B1 My Desire 6:13
B2 You Are My Sunshine 3:58
B3 It Feels So Good 5:29
B4 Lets Get Together 5:50 

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