"An all around excellent album" 4/5. (Alex De Lacy, Songlines Magazine)
"a euphoric joy" 4/5 - MOJO Magazine
"incredible musicianship" Cerys Matthews BBC6 Music
"...absolutely one of the most exciting bands on the planet right now" Neil March, Trust The Doc/Fresh on the Net
'360°’ is the second record from Kongo-Jazz outfit, Kongo Dia Ntotila. The 10-track album pays homage to some of Africa’s finest dance music styles - revived, urbanised, and seamlessly fused with a heavy injection of jazz. The ensemble consists of Mulele Matondo (bass), John Kelly (guitar), Mbouta Kissangwa (drums), Diala Sakuba (guitar) and UK jazz horn players William Scott (saxophone) and Mike Soper (trumpet).
BBC 6 Music's Tom Robinson described them as “totally authentic - as good as anything you get coming out of Africa… a great combination of sophistication, energy, musicianship, and sheer life-affirming spiritual uplift!” ‘360°’ is all of those things and more. In the title track, Kongo Dia Ntotila explores the urban sound of African London, inspired by the current new jazz scene of the UK capital, it’s grungy, joyful and funked up. There is the pain of ‘Naleli’, a song that laments the suffering of Africa with a Jazz-Reggae sound. The joyful fusion of album opener, ‘Kongo’, as Kinshasa collides with London Jazz in a celebration of Congolese roots. The album sees the band move collectively through the sounds and styles of Africa exploring notes of joy, celebration, pain, and protest. Although Kongo Dia Ntotila has brought Jazz and Blues influences into their music, the heart of their sound is rooted firmly in the motherland.
Get ready to dance your way through an intense, immersive and a seriously fun musical journey. With something for everyone, from dance floor divas to masterful musicians, ‘360’° will be appreciated for its catchy tunes as much as its technical artistry and sheer innovation.
released May 10, 2019
Kongo Dia Ntotila:
John Kelly -guitar
Mike Soper -trumpet
Will Scott -alto/tenor saxophone
David Lessie -drums, lead vocals
Mulele Matondo -bass, lead vocals
Extra guitars by Mulele Matondo(5) and special guest Dior Sakuba (3,4,5).
Congas by David Lessie (1,2,8,9,10) and Mulele Matondo (3,4).
Talking drum by Mulele Matondo (4).
Percussion played by all band members, plus Simo Lagnawi on Moroccan krakebs (1).
Backing vocals by all band members, plus Birikiti Pegram (5,10), Ngeya Maweja (3), Biram Seck (5), & Sophie Darling (5).
Samba Nkinsi did the voice of le faux boss (5) and the party starter (8), Alex Freitas did rap (9).
All tracks written by Kongo Dia Ntotila except: Mbongo, 360° & Faux Boss by Mulele Matondo. All lyrics written by Mulele Matondo & David Lessie except:Mbongo & Faux Boss by Mulele Matondo
Digital mastering by Shawn Joseph at Optimum Mastering. Vinyl mastering by Simon Davey at The Exchange. Vinyl Mixed by Mo Hausler for Pieces of 8 Music at Hackney Sound Recorder, London, UK. Recorded by Mulele Matondo at Studio Lumumba & Felix MacIntosh at Tigersonic Studio, London, UK.
Artwork by Ben Nugent
Thank you to PRS for Music Foundation, Max Reinhardt, Rita Ray, Tom Robinson, John Warr, DJ Ritu, Gerry Lyseight, Eugenio Giorgianni, Birikiti Pegram, Matt Gordon, Zoe Georgallis, Heather Ryall and Cydney Uffindell-Phillips for all of your support. Shout out to the next generation of Diantoti: Haile and Piankhi Matondo.
Across these songs, Ethiopian jazz, African psychedelic rock and funk, Sudanese dance rhythms, and Tuaregi grooves mingle with the jazz and folk traditions of the Americas. Bandcamp Album of the Day Mar 19, 2019