1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

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Archive for the tag “abstract truth”

My Back Feels Light/What Can You Say – Abstract Truth

Abstract Truth

Abstract Truth

Jazzy, funky, strutty and that’s the Abstract Truth. Or rather one should say, that’s ‘My Back Feels Light/What Can I Say’ by the Abstract Truth’. This slightly obscure track appeared on the super difficult to get hold of album ‘Cool Sounds For Heads’, however we are fortunate enough to be able to catch this one on the brilliant ‘Astral Daze’ compilation from Retro Fresh.

‘My Back Feels Light/What Can I Say’ by the Abstract Truth’ moves between the laid back intro (think Jack Johnson for a modern equivalent), but then throws in some brassy sounds before going into a jazzy Hammond organ interlude. It then moves into the second part of the song, ‘What Can You Say’ which is introduced with a quacking saxophone and the organ moves from jazzy to a more frenzied 60’s psychedelic sound.

This is a song full of changing moods and sounds and it keeps the listener engagae from start to finish. If we didn’t know better, one could be forgiven for thinking this came from the ‘Woodstock’ soundtrack as it has a similar feel. Ken E. Henson, who is credited with guitars and vocals on the album, has been around the SA music scene for a long time and this little lost (and refound on ‘Astral Daze’) masterpiece is a great example of his contribution. What (more) can you say?

Where to find it:
Astral Daze – Various Artists, RetroFresh, (2005), FRESHCD148

Sun – Impi

Sun – Impi (You’d be bats not to like it)

IMPI

IMPI

Impi, (not to be confused with John Kongos’ briefly lived band or Johnny Clegg’ seminal anthem) were mostly The Bats under a different name. To their ranks they added Sounds of Brass’ Peter Hubner, The Square Set’s Neville Whitmill and Hubner’s girlfriend Deni Loren. The group released one eponymously titled album which featured the track ‘Sun.’

Listening to it, one can see why The Bats chose not to release it under their usual name. It was far more prog rock influenced than most of their previous pop work and, perhaps they felt their fan base would not really like it. Starting out with a heavy beating drum (African rhythm), then weaving in a haunting pennywhistle before building up to the catchy chorus with a rich brass ensemble.

Unfortunately for The Bats, their alter ego did not really capture the hearts and minds of their pop fans, nor those of the progressive bands like Hawk, Abstract Truth and Freedom’s Children as the album did not do too well and faded into obscurity. Fortunately Benjy Mudie, the keeper of the South Africa rock flame, has just released the album on his Retrofresh label, so we are able to listen to ‘Sun’ and all the other tracks, and wonder why we didn’t go for it big time at the time.

Where to find it:
Impi – Impi (2012), Retrofresh, FRESHCD 183

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