Like many other North Americans, my introduction to African music was Paul Simon's "Graceland" album, and later the "Love's a Real Thing" compilation on Luka Bop. The Poly-Rythmo track from the latter prompted me to buy the Soundway's "King's of Benin" compilation.
If you liked the Luka Bop or Soundway discs, you will definitely enjoy this Analog Africa compilation. I was initially reluctant to buy this disc because the music was recorded using only a two-microphone set-up, the price was a bit high for a single disc, and I was not very taken with the label's "African Scream Contest" compilation.
Oh, was I ever wrong. The sound is so remarkably clear and has such depth that I marveled at how such sound could be captured with such a relatively primitive set-up. The music rivals the Soundway set, and has left me amazed at what a deep well of great material this band produced. How it took so long for this band to be recognized in the west is appalling, but then I recall my own long reluctance to acknowledge what is collectively dismissed as "world" music. Once again, I was wrong.
As for the price, the 44 page booklet more than makes up for this. Printed on very heavy paper, it is essentially a small book, packed with photos and tales of the effort it took to make, and then rediscover, this music. As an avid record collector, I do not think I could hunt through stacks of records in which scorpions are hiding. And, as for the tales of producing the music, one of the engineers went to prison because of his love for his craft. His tale is especially harrowing, and renders the vast majority of artist claims of "suffering" for their music laughable.