Album: Staff Benda Bilili, Très Très Fort (Crammed Discs)

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

Vincent Kenis, the producer of the Congotronics series, has captured the rough-edged essence of these paraplegic Congolese street musicians simply by placing a dozen microphones around them as they performed outside Kinshasa Zoo.

But this lot are more song-centred than the edgier group Konono N°1, taking their inspiration from reggae, rumba and even James Brown. Listen out for the one-stringed "lute" made from an old tin can and some electrical wire by the 17-year-old who plays it so brilliantly.

Pick of the Album: The straight-down-the-line acoustic funk of 'Je T'Aime'