Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou - Madjafalao
The album follows the release of Cotonou Club in 2011 on Strut Records, their first new recorded music since the early 80s. Founded in Benin in 1968 by bandleader M̩lom̩ Cl̩ment, the band were hugely popular across West Africa throughout the 1970s recording hundreds of tracks and over 50 albums and playing alongside the likes of Fela Kuti during the decade. A combination of the deaths of original members guitarist Papillon and drummer Leopold and the country entering a period of economic hardship and decline under the dictatorship of Mathieu Kerekou in the early 80s saw the band go into indefinite hiatus. However, a burgeoning interest in West African music in Europe saw labels such as Soundway and Analog Africa extensively and lovingly re-issue their back-catalogue and in 2008 the band reformed around M̩lom̩ Cl̩ment, Gustave Bentho and Vincent Ahehehinnou and toured the world, visiting Europe (including a sold-out show at London‰۪s Barbican Centre), Japan, Brazil, North America and most of Africa. After the death of M̩lom̩ Cl̩ment in 2012, singer Vincent Ahehehinnou, bass player Gustave Bentho and singer Loko Pierre decided to keep the Poly-Rythmo flame alive and after a few months hiatus they resumed rehearsals and started composing new songs, tracks which would eventually form the basis of Madjafalao.