check out the fresh psychedelic funk of france’s the afrorockerz. #soundcheck

July 1, 2013

Imagine a collision of the space ships carrying Frank Zappa, Garry Shider, Fela Kuti, and Ian Dury. Once the road-rage subsides and they’ve successfully exchanged insurance information, the quartet begins an epic psychedelic funk party. (“But Nathan,” you’re saying, “none of those people are still alive. Also to the best of my knowledge none of them had space ships.” Ah, I forgot to mention that this happened during all of their creative peaks in 1979 near a star 34 light years away. That’s why we’re only hearing about it now. And you can’t prove that Garry Shider didn’t have a space ship. What kind of StarChild would he have been without one? My point exactly.) That star born psych freak-out would sound a lot like the latest EP from France’s The Afrorockerz.

Led by Chicago spoken word artist Allonymous and Central African Republic soul singer Emma Lamadji, The Afrorockerz revisits the guitar-driven psychedelic funk of the early Funkadelic records. Allonymous’ abstract poetry blends with Emma Lamadji’s soulful croon, bouncing off each other like the twin vocals of a funk Fugazi. The three tracks “Children Wont Sleep Tonight,” “Remember,” and “Until We Meet Again” each highlight a different aspect of the band. The macabre spoken word rooted synth groove of “Children Wont Sleep Tonight” is in stark contrast to the Emma Lamadji lead vocal on the Afrobeat “Remember.” The band finds a balance on the psychedelic “Until We Meet Again” mixing the band’s penchant for spaced-out guitar licks and infectious dance grooves.

– Words by Nathan Leigh