News, reviews and commentary on afrobeat and related music from Africa, The Caribbean and The Americas

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Balla Et Ses Balladin- "The Intellectuals of Guinean Music"

I recently checked out the album “The Syliphone Years” by the Guinean-based group, Balla Et Ses Balladin. This expansive collection of two CD’s documents one of Guinea’s most influential groups at a time when the country was at the center of African music. The 2 CD’s were compiled by a team of collectors around the world and includes some of the group’s rarest recordings along with their greatest hits. “The Syliphone Years” documents an incredible era of African music.

Balla Et Ses Balladin infuses their distinct African sound with Latin and jazz flavors with virtuosic efficiency. World renowned for their mastery of multiple different styles of music, the group raised the bar for African musicians and compelled listeners to explore the possibilities within African music. Songs like “Moi Ca Ma Fout” and “Nyo” exhibit Balla Et Ses Balladin’s instrumental and vocal complexities while maintaining the danceable grooves and catchy melodies of Afrobeat and Highlife. “Sakhodougou” shows a glimpse at Latin music’s influence on the group and creates new colors within an already explosive collection of music.

“The Syliphone Years” is an incredible product for African music enthusiasts. Balla Et Ses Balladin stood at the forefront of Guinean music at an important time for African music and this CD collection has captured the magic of the era. Definitely check it out!

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