Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Mzikayifani Buthelezi

  • Fashion Maswedi [Rounder, 1988] B+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Fashion Maswedi [Rounder, 1988]
A traditionally raised country Zulu, he sings like he's calling cattle or berating his six wives while his brother saws away on concertina or violin and groups of wives and male underlings muscle up to the mike. Pretty raw even for mbaqanga, and pretty repetitive, too--Jo'burg rhythm pros provide the now-familiar four-four. But familiarity doesn't flatten the overall intensity--instead, Buthelezi's wail demonstrates its character. If someone had bothered to pick and choose from his 100-plus titles instead of rereleasing an old album, he might end up more than a strange name in a catalogue. B+