Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Here we have a second album by the Ogyatanaa Show Band, the group responsible for the legendary Yerefrefre (or "African Fire") album. Tracks from that record like "Yaa Amponsah" and "Mmobrowa" have appeared on the Ghana Soundz compilations, as well as the Agoro Records compilation I've posted here some time back (Agoro Nkoaa). Obra Mu Asem hasn't received the same kind of attention that Yerefrefre has (the cover is rather bland...), but in my book it's a great overlooked album that deserves some listening.
As with their other releases, this record from Ogyatanaa showcases the group's unique fusion sound. At its core Ogyatanaa is a dance-band in the tradition of Uhuru, Ramblers, E.T. Mensah, etc., yet elements of funk and soul have also been added. The classic dance-band sound has undergone development here with the integration of the other sounds of '70s Ghana. Just listen to the heavy organ throughout and that soulful singing!