Jun 15, 2011

Michael Veal & Aqua Ife - Volume One

I personally have to thank Michael Veal a lot. As some of you may know, Michael Veal is the author of the Fela Kuti biography "Fela: The Life And Times Of An African Musical Icon" and therefore has a lot of history in promoting Afrobeat music.

Here's the story: A couple of months ago I was personally contacted by Michael himself and he kindly asked whether it is possible to add a review of his currently published disc with Aqua Ife named "Volume One" on my page. Of course, ... just a matter of listening to their songs before ... Michael gratefully offered me to ship their disc to Germany and finally I received to copies of their album, already quite some time ago I honestly have to say.

But of course, I do not want to withhold you a great amazing disc of afrobeat tunes, therefore, here's the review:

Honestly, I was not quite sure what I expected when listening to their two songs for the first time but I have to say it kind of surprised me. These two songs are full of Afrobeat tunes, but quite often I thought that there is quite a jazzy Afrobeat approach in their music. Somehow I always thought a little bit it sounds a little bit like Ayetoro, a great Nigerian band who also play a very jazz-influenced Afrobeat style. The drumbeat is quite relaxing, supported by a amazing, mind-blowing trumpet and saxophone, whereby the guitar supports these two instruments in a very charming way. Honestly, you have to check their disc or even better go to one of their concerts which are frequently published on their facebook page!

Otherwise there's also another possibilty to check out their music at Michael's youtube page here!


In other words:

"Volume One" is the the first album by Michael Veal & Aqua Ife, a 13-piece Afrobeat-jazz band based in New York City. Led by bassist/composer Michael Veal, the band boasts some of the finest jazz, African, and Afro-Cuban musicians in the New York area. Veal, who has played with Fela Kuti and Afro-Beat "co-pilot" Tony Allen, draws on various African styles, on imaginative jazz composers such as Sun Ra, Julius Hemphill and Randy Weston, and on electronic elements to take the listener on a beautiful ride through a deep vision of Afrobeat.

cdbaby.com - just one of a lot possibilities to buy their disc as well ...


01. Djerma New Drum Chant
02. Late General (Cheif) Odopa

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