Rooibaardt - Increase da peace

2006-03-30 00:54

Could this be the most all-encompassing, politically correct CD ever produced in SA? Rooibaardt squeeze in so many world music influences on their album it almost seems like a political statement. They sing in Afrikaans, English, Sotho and Zulu about love, rain, politics and dagga. So basically, Rooibaardt are hippies.

But too many influences can sometimes spoil the broth, and although Rooibaardt's sound is often pleasing when taken on a song by song basis, Increase Da Peace is anything but a cohesive album. In fact, it sounds more like a various artists' compilation. So even after listening to the entire album, it's still hard to tell what Rooibaardt actually sound like.

Now some might argue that there is no reason why a band should feel obliged to tie themselves down to a certain sound. For example, Frank Zappa's eclecticism has always been celebrated by his fans. But unlike Rooibaardt, Zappa always sounded like Zappa, no matter what musical style he was experimenting with.

Rooibaardt are on the right track, though. Their music has a sweet naive charm - they just need a bit of time to find their voice.

- Chris McEvoy

Rooibaardt are four Afrikaans South African guys determined to take you around the world with their broard range of influences. Increase Da Peace features reggae, Irish, Spanish and plenty of African sounds, all bundled together in a haphazard pop-rock package.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.