This article originally appeared in the Chicago Reader.

Active since 2002, last year this local combo released its self-titled debut album, which displayed plenty of chops and energy if not much originality—but then again, not many Afrobeat bands ever evolve too far beyond the naked worship of Fela Kuti, who pioneered the relentlessly funky style in Nigeria in the late 60s. Several notable Chicagoans—including kora player Morikeba Kouyate and guitarist Fareed Haque (see above)—make cameo appearances that briefly soften the complexion of the music, but for the most part the band cooks hard, slotting economical solos into its taut ensemble grooves.

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