BENIS CLETIN - ALPHA & OMEGA Vinyl LP
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In the mid eighties FM radio stations took over the airwaves in Nigeria. They wanted fresh new styles to play andin creasingly radio personalities like Bisi Olatilo, Ruime Effetie and Shea Martins were turning to reggae. Nigeria’s Freak Father Number One, Benis Cletin, saw the writing on the wall and created his deeply philosophical roots reggae opus, ‘Alpha & Omega’. Benis delivered a set of songs that tapped unashamedly into reggae’s message of peace and love. The title track is a philosophical opus on the state of the world and how to live in it. ‘Unqualified’ warns against letting others tell you how to live. ‘Guns for Freedom’ is more militant call to arms, undercut by a lilting flute line from the legendary Eji Oyewole. Benis didn’t completely abandon his freaky, funky roots. ‘Soul Fever’ is a slab of synth-driven boogie and ‘Get Up And Dance’ is pure funk with that typical Benis freak edge. But overall, ‘Alhpa and Omega’ is designed to soothe the minds of the oppressed in this unjust world – an African roots reggae classic that sounded great on FM radio.