Tonga Boys - Albert, Guta, Solomon, Myrias and „MadMax” Peter - live in Mzuzu, far from their native homeland - Nkhata Bay. They spend most of their time around main market, trying to earn a dollar anyhow. These recordings were made in at their slum houses. Apart from the only drum they own, the all other instruments were improvised from anything at hand - plastic buckets, an ax, cans filled with gravel, a guitar made from wires and raw wooden board. The only overdub is electronic low kick drum, that made up the heavy sound they wanted but could not achieved.
Tonga Boys, living on the economic edge of society, don’t afraid to raise some taboo issues. In the opener „Amolotoni/Sato” they sing straightforwardly about black magic and witches (truly important issue for Malawians). Later they address poverty and helplessness („Dandaulo” means „Lament”), lack of medicines and infant mortality („Malaria” with a quote from popular child’s school song „Panchenga”). Other songs are a bit more sunny: „Tibwiza” is about tribal dances from Malawi (gule wamkulu and ingoma), „Tiri Bwino” is laid back dedication to all friends of the band with a refrain saying „it’s ok!”. „Kaluluwina” is the story of young man who is torn apart between his drinking friends and fiancée.
released April 5, 2017
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