Rock Town Express - S/T LP
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There was a time in the 1970s when the best band in the Nigeria was actually from Cameroon. Rock Town Express, formed out of the ashes of Wrinkar Experience by Yaoundé boys Edjo’o Jacques Racine and Ginger Forcha, hit it hard, hit it loud and hit it funky. Racine and Forcha had been recruited from Cameroon by Dan Ian and after only six months, left them stranded in Nigeria’s troubled east. Their first album as Rock Town Express was released on Ginger Baker’s ARC label in 1974. This, their second eponymous album, features a more subdued sepia toned cover but rocks even harder. The horror of the Biafran War weighs heavily on Rock Town Express. The guitars wail, the horns parp and the synths swirls in a maelstrom of pain and anger. ‘Peaceful Solution’ implores people to live in peace and harmony. ‘Spaceville Rape’ bemoans the wanton destruction that comes with war. And ’Nobody’s Man’ is the defiant cry of an ex-soldier determined to make his own way in the world. Rock Town Express is an angry and dark transmission from Nigeria’s east that the war may have been over, but the scars were still yet to heal. – Peter Moore