Boomkat Product Review:
Sourced from the analog master tapes for the first time, Sharp-Flat presents Witch's 1984 slab of swingeing boogie-disco, which marked the end of their initial run of dare-to-differ Afro-rock spins on garage and psych that they started in 1972
In line with shifting trends of the ’70s into ‘80s, Zambia’s remarkable WITCH (We Intend To Cause Havoc) would keep abreast of prevailing Afro-American derived Rhythm & Blues grooves, stitched with local swerve, between their early, self-released recordings of fuzzed up garage-psych in 1972 thru to ‘Kuomboka’, a deadly slant on boogie-disco spliced with deep Central and South African rhythms and themes. While their earliest works caused shockwaves on reissue in the past decade, their last record before disbanding for decades has arguably been overlooked. It betrays a much sweeter, sexier thrust, with well-oiled basslines,multi-track layered vocal harmonies and a certain feminine pressure that parallel sounds of bubblegum disco farther south from these sessions, made in a state-of-the-art studio after relocation to Harare, Zimbabwe.
Shades of Afrobeat brim from the below-the-belt R&B wiggle of opener ‘Erotic Delight’, before they lock into proper disco swagger and falsetto vox on the ohrwurming ‘I Can Do Without You’. They cool out on a harmonised AOR rock tip a la 10CC in the gorgeous ‘Believer Ma Lover’ and ‘I Wanna See The Light’, and it’s back to centre of the ‘floor on ‘Kuomboka’, setting lyrics about a traditional migration ceremony practiced by the Lozi people of the Zambezi floodplains to hot brass and fretting bass. ‘Come Together’ is another instant club bomb, with ‘Jah Children’ signing off on a smooth kinda punky-reggae-disco tip.