Dance or Die - Mzee

2007-11-09 06:02
Who would have ever thought a stuck-up investigative journalist would have such a profound love for music? Well, Mzee is out to prove music is his true passion. And yes after listening to this refreshing fruit cocktail of Afro-house music, we are convinced he’s found his calling.

Dance or Die kicks off with a hint of Limpopo and Mpumalanga traditional song in “Mahuwelele” – it’s one of those gems that makes weep when you think of leaving home. Next he takes us back to our roots with call-and-response vocals soaked in African rhythms on the bubbly “Nanan”. Many of us who grew up to the sound of grandpa’s squeezebox (an accordion) at every family gathering will love Mzee’s use of this ancient instrument.
Then he introduces us to Swaziland’s traditional song in “Mine Bengidzakiwe” which he flavours with groovy house undertones. After this he celebrates Durban’s talent with maskandi genius, Ihashi Elimphlophe in “Siya eDurban” and then chills out with emotive house instrumentals in “T Txoroca” featuring the Minister of Music, Pops Mohammed on mbira, kora and kalimba. The album also has party starters like “Mama Afrika” featuring Jeff Maluleke’s hook-jammed vocals that will make you wish you were boarding the next plane back home and Oliver Mtukudzi’s “Neria Remix”. And let’s not forget the jazzier house mood of “Lets Start a Revolution” with guitarist Siphiwe Shabane.

Dance or Die is no ordinary dance floor filler. For anyone who’s serious about supporting African music it’s a must-have in their collection.

-Tiisetso Tlelima

If you ever find yourself in a foreign land or estranged from your family, then Mzee’s Dance or Die is one of those souvenir albums you cannot afford to be without this festive season. From house flavoured mbaqanga to maskandi to traditional mokete and wedding songs Mzee’s got the best of what Africa has to offer.

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