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Ivory Coast Soul

Various Artists

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

With a plethora of bygone vintage African compilations out there, what sets this one apart is that you can actually party to it — from start to finish Ivory Coast Soul is that good. The songs here were carefully mined from the annals of obscurity thanks to diligent vinyl hounds — though it’s not the rareness of these gems that shines so much as the quality of the grooves radiating from them. Pierre Antoine’s “Kalabuley Woman” is a solid jam fruitful with percussive layers setting a solid foundation for buttery bass runs and a festive horn section; but it’s Okoi Seka’s “Melokon Mebun ou” that really gets things going with an infectious afro-beat and funky electric guitar riffs exchanging rhythms with conga drums while Seka sings like a man possessed. A small helping of Western disco even surfaces on Jimmy Hiacynthe’s bellbottomed “Yatchiminou” and the silky strut of Santa Nguessan’s “Manny Nia,” a blossoming garden of dance-floor funk where wah-wah pedals seem to fall from trees. Ernesto Djédjé infuses Allman Brothers-esque guitar jams into the sunny strut of standout cut “Zadie Bobo.”

Ivory Coast Soul
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