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Wunmi album launch

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 9:33 am
by howard male
Wunmi finally launches her poppy, sassy Afrobeat album 'ALA' at the Notting Hill Arts Club, 21 Notting Hill Gate, this Thursday. It's a fiver to get in and she's on around 10.15pm. Should be fun.

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 6:19 pm
by howard male
Just spotted in Time Out that it's free to get in before 8.00pm.

PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2007 11:43 am
by howard male
Wunmi at the Notting Hill Arts Club

Because of the nature of her album (lots of different producers and Djs involved) I feared that Wunmi might be performing to a backing which consisted of mostly loops and samples with maybe a token live musician or two. But she in fact had a complete band which was as tight as you could wish for.

The woman is a force of nature live and I could see why she feels frustrated that people only experience a bit of the 'Wunmi thing' from her recorded work. Looking like some kind of Sci Fi Amazon warrior princess, with her huge, partly pink Mohicaned hair, black and silver clothes, and long limbs, she seemed to fill the whole tiny stage of the Notting Hill Arts Club, making it hard for me to even visualise what the rest of the band looked like as I think about it this morning.

fRoots' John Lust, who's done a feature on Wunmi in the new issue, had a big grin on his face for much of the time, so I think he enjoyed himself too. We did discuss Wunmi's ability as a singer with him having his doubts and me being more forgiving. As far as I'm concerned Wunmi sings in the manner of many Nigerian Afrobeat singers and there's little point in expecting the vocal gymnastics of, say, a soul vocalist from her.

But what did impress me was how her semi-rapping delivery and her dancing seemed inseparable from each other as if they fed off each other. There was none of that embarrassing thing you get with the likes of Madonna or Beyonce, where, live, they simply can't do both things at the same time as well as they'd like to, and so end up a bit shaky, unless they mime the vocals or limit the dancing.

Unfortunately this was one of those kind venues where the audience see the band as an imposition to their enjoyment of the records, so Wunmi played a frustratingly short set and no encore. But this was one of the most intense yet good humoured performances I've seen in a long time.

Good luck to Wunmi and her thing.

PS

Your next chance to see her with a full band is at the Jazz Cafe on the 2nd of June.