Fela Kuti - He Miss Road / Expensive Shit (CD)

Fela Kuti - He Miss Road / Expensive Shit (CD)



Both recordings were issued in 1975, which isn't surprising since he released six albums during that year.

This set puts them in reverse order, but that's fine. Expensive Shit was produced by Kuti and contains two long tracks, the title cut which clocks in at a little over 13 minutes, and "Water No Get Enemy."

As with all of Kuti's recordings, the groove here is what makes or breaks them. A lone guitar playing a jazz riff is joined by a percussive and spooky piano before a synth and a single drum add dimension. "Water Get No Enemy" is righteous, funky, and spacious all at the same time. The bleating horn section punches through the bass, keyboards, and drums; wordless vocals are chanted setting up a call-and-response with the music.

He Miss Road was produced by none other than Ginger Baker, who was a semi-regular jamming partner of Kuti's, as well as a close friend. And the tunes Kuti wrote for this platter are wild, cosmic and deeply saturated in funk a_ la James Brown.

This pairing of albums works so well it makes for a fantastic listening experience. It shows the depth and texture Kuti's sound took on in the mid-'70s, one of his most creative and consistent periods. As a single disc -- with a running time of about 63 minutes -- it's indispensable for fans, and an amazing introduction to the novitiate

1. Expensive Shit
2. Water No Get Enemy
3. He Miss Road
4. Monday Morning in Lagos
5. It's Not Possible