Exclaim! Reviews “What Goes Up”

This article by Jason Parker Quinton originally appeared on Exclaim!

The righteous assertions of Afrobeat’s sonic revolution are most present in our culture as polyrhythms that are pervasive in genres from pop to hip-hop.

This record by the venerable Chicago Afrobeat Project continues their legacy of releasing music true to the tradition of Fela Kuti while including pieces of blues, jazz, hip-hop and other strands that inflect the sound of the Windy City. For this magnificent collage, they were astute to hire Kuti collaborator and versatile beatsmith Tony Allen. His percussion keeps the sound rooted deep in Africa, as the gang of talented Americans ably change lanes from the traditional to the avant-garde, cruising confidently on timeless grooves.
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World Beat Int’l Reviews “What Goes Up”

This article originally appeared on World Beat International.

Pizza and music; one ultimately edible and one possibly edifying, both consumed in great quantities around North America. And, every US major city tries to put it own spin on both. You have your New York style big slice, your Chicago deep dish, Philadelphia tomato pie, St. Louis thin crust or Los Angeles … whatever the weird they throw on crust and call pizza. I’m getting to a point here, bear with me. Afrobeat has become similarly commodious as pizza, and regional variations are making their way into the musical mix. Again, Brooklyn Afrobeat is different from DC Afrobeat, from East LA Afrobeat from Austin Afrobeat. Chicago Afrobeat Project puts its city’s stamp on the groove.
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ThrdCoast Reviews “What Goes Up”

This article by Laura Kerry originally appeared on ThrdCoast.

For the last 15 years, a varying group of musicians has met in Chicago lofts and studios to create around their shared love of Afrobeat music. Since 2012, Chicago Afrobeat Project (CAbP) has released four albums and developed a unique sound that combines West African beats, jazz instrumentation and melodies, and a range of elements from other genres, from funk to indie.

Inviting different members and artists to contribute and leave their mark as they please, CAbP runs as more of a collective than a rigid band, and their new release, What Goes Up, reflects this structure (or lack thereof). In ten songs, the album cycles through different voices, moods, and instrumentation, crediting almost 20 different artists—about half of whom are vocalists. As a result, though the bass, guitar, synth, and horn sections remain throughout, each song carries a different tone.
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