Made during the golden age of 80s synthesizers, Ogooué is a nostalgic journey into African music's exploratory past.
Buckle up and get ready for a bit of rhythmic and synthesizer-laced time travel. Gabonese musician François N'Gwa has been making music since the early 80s, toying and playing with sound during the era of electronic exploration. The sound he produced is a vibrant, enthusiastic and attention-grabbing one that blends African rhythms and sentiments with digital noises that seem to play tug of war with the air around it. New French record label Into the Deep Treasury is releasing an 8-track compilation of N'Gwa's tracks made between 1985 and 2004, called Ogooué.
Ogooué is presented as a tribute to Gabon. Each track has been restored, remastered and brought to life for both digital and vinyl formats. The compilation boasts sounds of soukous, afrobeat, funk and new-wave among others. It is both spacey and completely grounded at the same time, definitely something to check out for anyone interested in hearing an evolution of Gabonese music through the lens of one man. The tracks on this compilation were originally made in N'Gwa's home studio in Paris as he played around with new and exciting production software—the precursors to Garageband and Protools of today. That sense of exploration, of infinite possibilities is wholly present in each and every track on the album.
Gather up your parents, aunties and uncles, then press play and enjoy the nostalgic, yet futuristic world that N'Gwa creates. Ogooué will be released on November 25th, you can pre-order it here and stream two tracks, "N'Kang" and "N'Kene," below.