Up Tempo (muse-letter from Florida), CD review >>
Less renowned than her fellow Zimbabwean Thomas Mapfumo but with no contradictions and increasingly better representing her nation is the high priestess, mbira mistress Chiweshe, continuing a balanced journey of spiritual and political command.
Talking Mbira has priorities in order, not pointing fingers for its own sake, just simply posing situations and precedents that can be applies worldwide in the figurative and literal sense. Chiweshe reminds, recounts, and reinstates incidents both bad and good for lessons to be taught, learned and passed down, healing, breathing sacred soul-saving sounds through the pores of the Spirits.
“Chachimurenga” brings the “Soweto” beat in for the ongoing fight against apartheid, linking southern Afrikan sounds to struggle. “Uchiseka” is a sweet beat instructing to smile for strength in the face of antagonists. “Musandifungise” tells of the banning of the mbira and other traditional Afrikan instruments, a time best left in the past. “Paite Rima” tells of the spirit of the people in the lion and for their help against suffering. “Tapera” is a solemnly beautiful, hauntingly hypnotic force noting the plagues of the Earth. “Nhamoimbiri” reminds us of our responsibilities in life, will we live up to them or will waste take hold? “Manja” beckons back discounted ways of early Shona life overrun by “modernity.” And “Huvhimi” creates an enchanting chant of the hunters, foretelling epic adventures while closing one which is this grand Afrikan set. Talking Mbira speaks words of wonder and will give your soul a hearty taste of and for freedom. 12/05/02