1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

Just another music list

Prayer For Civilization – Kalahari Surfers

Prayer For Civilization – Kalahari Surfers

A Naartjie In Our Sosatie

A Naartjie In Our Sosatie

How, one may ask, can we pray for civilization if it is difficult to find any to pray for? Then again, the title of this Kalahari Surfer’s song may just be a prayer for people to start being civil to each other. Given that the track appeared on the ‘A Naartjie In Our Sosatie’ album which was first released on Shifty Records in 1985 when the country was in upheaval, I would suggest that even if the latter was not what the Surfers had in mind, it certainly would be appropriate.

Warrick Sony and his band throw together a mish mash of sounds and samples into what at times seems more of an aural collage than a song. It is not an easy song to listen to with sounds sticking out at different angles. Jazzy saxaphones fight with a stuttering, stumbling beat while a preacher prays for the safe return of armed forces. A coughing guitar splutters and a weird operatic lady (the fat one?) sings a strange, almost strangled wail.

This is modern art music where the artist attacks the canvas with forms and lines and blobs and splashes to create a mood, a feeling of what they are trying to portray. Samples and slogans are thrown into the mix to get the message across. ‘Prayer For Civilization’ was an ambitious song and would not have sat easily on any turntable. It needs to be experienced rather than listened to.

Where to find it:
A Naartjie In Our Sosatie – Various (1999), Cutting Grooves Records, CGCD001



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