The Bongolian – Bongos For Beatniks


Believe me the LP sounds a lot better than this review makes it sound. Good fun.


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4 LPs worth of bongo music now, will Nasser Bouzida ever stop? This is another fine offering, though it’s difficult at this stage to know whether the lad is on a Righteous quest to document his Muse or just clogging us up with ersatz takes on the original Easy Lstening thang. Time will tell. For now we can but listen to Bongos for Beatniks, which starts off with a soul inflected trio; the Riviera Affair sounds its title, and Moscow Queen is a mix of Vampyros Lesbos keys & brass stabs and some funk that veers unsteadily between soul and disco. Strange Lovers carries on the 60s cult film feel; vamping up along the lines of Get Carter, albeit with more of a Boogaloo sensibility. Or, maybe more acid...


Things get slightly anthemic with tracks like V.C.O. and rocky with Give It TO Me (On the Left Side) with its daft Tim Leary / 7Up vocal take; or slow with the reflective and appealing The Ballad of Lily Kensington. And there's that cheesy daftness with Jackie’s Half Nelson, which could be a backing track for a Bernard Cribbens single. Best is saved till last with two tremendous takes: Bongolian Dream is a Utopean fantasy of sorts – a sort of warm and fuzzy electro dream (with bongos) and the last, Tortoise Walk, which is a marvellously sludgy piece, a perfect afternoon pub soundtrack.


Believe me the LP sounds a lot better than this review makes it sound. Good fun.