Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea and Nigerian Afrobeat legend Tony Allen form Rocket Juice & the Moon, a once in a lifetime collaboration. The eponymous album, released worldwide Monday March 26th, has already been called “an excellent” album (BBC) and “a masterclass” (The Independent).Among the guests on this 18-track album are Erykah Badu, Malian singer Fatoumata Diawara and one of Ghana’s finest rappers, M.anifest. M.anifest makes a telling contribution to the album as he appears on five tracks.
eMusic’s review of the album declares, “Ghanaian rapper M.anifest is a revelation,” whiles Slant Magazine calls M.anifest’s emceeing “brilliant” describing his appearances as “waxing lyrical with more accessible themes and vivid narratives than today's crop of voguish rappers can muster between them.”
Sharing the stage with such legendary musicians marks a remarkable rise for the young rapper who says he is humbled by it all.
“It was an absolute honor having been able to sit and collaborate with great musicians whose remarkable work I was already fond of,” M.anifest says.
“Dam(n)” has M.anifest teaming up with Erykah Badu on a seductively haunting groove. The double entendre references to Akosombo Dam are certain to delight his countrymen. “Follow Fashion” and “Lolo” see M.anifest teaming up with Fatoumata Diawara on horn-laced uptempo rhythms provided by the veteran trio.
Rocket Juice & the Moon comes as a welcome profile boost for M.anifest whose recently released sophomore album, “Immigrant Chronicles: Coming to America” has earned him two Ghana Music Award nominations in the Best Rapper and Songwriter of the year categories. The BBC World Service’s arts program “The Strand” mentioned him as one of four artists to look out for in 2012.
By rejecting straitjacket categorizations of their music and fusing afrobeat, funk, soul, Hip-Hop & psychedelia this effort is bound to appeal to the sensibilities of many music lovers across genres. Flea, Damon Albarn, and Tony Allen show their class as legendary musicians as they provide a platform for the great guests to shine as well.
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