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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Haut de gamme / Koweït, rive gauche

Koffi Olomide

1992

Haut de gamme / Koweït, rive gauche
Album Summary

Antoine Christophe Agbepa Mumba (13 July 1956), known professionally as Koffi Olomidé, is a Congolese Soukus singer, dancer, producer, and composer. He has had several gold records in his career. He is the founder of the Quartier Latin International orchestra with many notable artists, including Fally Ipupa and Ferré Gola.

Wikipedia

Rating

2.6

Votes

9316
Genres
World

Reviews

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Fri Jun 24 2022
3

People giving this a 1 while criticizing the artist's past transgressions, at the same time handing out 5s to albums with Lennon, Paige, Bowie or James Brown, I see you.... If we manage to separate the art from the artist, we get a lively, upbeat, infectious, dance-able record that serves as the de facto representative of soukous music on the list. I don't know enough about the genre to judge weather it serves as a fair representation, but I do know that Congolese music as a whole is very much worth in depth exploration.

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Fri Feb 25 2022
1

My opinion about the music is irrelevant. From the wikipedia page - 'In 2019, He was found guilty by a French court of statutory rape of one of his former dancers when she was 15 years old.[8] He was handed a two-year suspended jail sentence in absentia, as he did not attend court in France.'

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Mon Jan 09 2023
2

Absolutely nothing about this did anything for me. It sounds like a "safe for the tourists" soundtrack at a cruiseship bar. I can't, in good conscience, give it a one-star review because the actual musicianship isn't bad, but I also can't, in good conscience, give it anything more than a two-star review. The only thing exceptional about this album is how exceptionally soft and boring it was.

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Mon Jun 14 2021
4

I am truly impressed with the amount of non-western music that is on this list. I loved this album, a unique sound, and very melodic. You can hear some of the French/Belgian influences there, but this is really its own thing. As with a lot of African albums on this list, I do not really feel qualified to rate this in any sort of objective way. But I found this so groovy that I HAVE to give it at least 4.

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Thu Jun 24 2021
3

Interesting and pleasant enough but I really lack context for this to fully appreciate it. I dig the MS Paint cover though.

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Thu Feb 16 2023
1

Man, I had a *great* one-line review making a pun out of the title of the first track, but then I read about this guy and his sex criminal status and realized that joke would make light of his crime and reflect extremely poorly on me if I published it.

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Thu Apr 29 2021
4

This was such an unexpected and fun album. I didn't have my expectation high after looking at the cover but I'm glad I listened to it.

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Thu Jun 24 2021
4

Great African music from the early 90s. My naive comparison would be the Paul Simon's Graceland but without Paul Simon.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
4

I must admit that this record immediately took a stranglehold of my heart. Its playful elegance put me in mind of when Ralf Little tickled my virgin anus with a feather duster all those years ago. What a little angel.

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Fri Jun 25 2021
4

This was awesome. Perfect relaxing music with bits of excitement. There was a great variety between each song but all felt perfect for the beach or a relaxing shindig. I've said it before but these are the albums I'm trying to get on this list. Really liked Desespoir but cruised through most of the rest as well.

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Thu Sep 29 2022
1

This might be a lyrical masterpiece, but I don't speak French... Also, it's island music the whole way through. Not my favorite.

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Fri Sep 25 2020
4

Super groovy!! The music gave me lilo and stitch vibes. I tried to read more about the artist but literally every article is in french

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Fri Aug 13 2021
3

I'll have to admit, this is very different from music I normally listen to. It was very refreshing. I don't know if I would put this on and listen to this every day, but I would imagine listening to it every so often; it was very "joyous."

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Mon Sep 06 2021
3

I was instantly attracted to soukous when I first heard it decades ago. In the late 90s I got a pair of tickets to a soukous show at a very intimate venue. It was hard to find someone to come with me. The typical reaction was: "wtf is soukous?" I eventually found someone but from the looks of it many others attending the show were less successful finding a date; there were only around 50 people there. Travelling to another continent is much harder when you’re from the DRC. I expect the musicians that played that gig have to pursue a detailed Visa process from just about everywhere they travel to and it's unfortunate that a multicultural city like Toronto couldn't find more than a handful of people to attend. Unlike Mali and South Africa, DRC never had a Ry Cooder or Paul SImon to tell the North Americans they should check this out. I don't remember who was playing at the gig I went to, but they were much better than Koffi imo. The guitars were sizzling that evening. I'm not a big fan of the ballad-like songs that Koffi plays so only like half the songs. Nonetheless, the guitar licks that the soukous players all seem to have in their repertoire make this an enjoyable listen.

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Fri Nov 19 2021
3

Ah yes, music for white people who have carved African salad tongs aka music played at free trade stores aka music written for white people who watch PBS aka music for anthropology and English professors to get their rocks off on the dance floor aka music played at the local Zoo’s summer concert series. I don’t want to tear this down because it is such happy music. It definitely got my toes tapping. But the dated 90s synth just assassinates any pleasure in my ears. I’m going to be nice though, 3.

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Wed Mar 22 2023
3

Sweet jacket on Koffi, but a little more effort for the cover could have been put forth. Highly enjoyable and pleasant album - I wouldn't say I got chills from the music but nearly the entire hour is both easy to listen to and mostly not boring ("Obrigado" is where it begins to tire me, maybe the repetitive nature of the last songs or the fact that we're pushing 50+ minutes at that point). Overall excellent clarity with the instruments although it's a bit heavy-handed with the reverb... I'm finding that I like non-English albums much more than I realized - vocals/lyrics are too often distracting - with my not understanding them they become an instrument melding in with the rest of the music - nice. 6/10 3 stars

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Thu Jan 21 2021
2

First 2 songs were OK, the rest of the album went downhill and lost my interest.

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Sun Dec 05 2021
2

For years I'd wondered why The Kinks were so lauded, but it turns out this is it. Their legacy echoes through the 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond. The album itself paints a picture of Britain at a particular point in time, where things didn't feel so great, to the point where a young hopeful Brit might uproot their entire life and move to the other side of the world, in search of a better existence. Arthur is about what's left behind and also the things that you can't ever leave behind. Well crafted pop, including the scorching opening track "Victoria".

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Thu Feb 17 2022
2

med risk för att låta hemsk men det blir för mycket afrika.

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Sun Dec 25 2022
2

It's a treat hear music that I otherwise would never be exposed to, but I'm pretty sure there are better examples than this. There are moments that are nice to bob your head to, but generally this isn't very notable. It's certainly not an album that I NEEDED to hear, you know?

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Wed Apr 19 2023
1

I kind of hated this. Way too long and gave me a headache. Bongos are the only thing I really like. 3/10

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Wed Jan 17 2024
1

Weekend at Bernie’s dancing the congo line music.

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Wed Mar 10 2021
5

Love this! Need it in my veins!

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Thu May 27 2021
5

Cinco estrellas no son suficientes. Ya vi que ni les gustó tanto Os Mutantes, esto seguro les dio hueva. En fin, es hermoso.

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Fri May 14 2021
5

So upbeat and happy! Loved it

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Thu Mar 17 2022
5

Great album. Had an amazing time and was fully relaxed.

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Fri Sep 16 2022
5

Delightful album! Hard to feel anything but joyful, start to finish.

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Wed Aug 30 2023
5

Very good, very groovy, 5 stars.

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Mon Oct 09 2023
5

Don’t know what he was singing about but shit out me in a good ass mood

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Thu Oct 19 2023
5

upbeat and smooth. Could listen and dance to this groove

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Thu Jan 11 2024
5

I have a moderate love for West African music but this is really good music. Lots of variety and Koffi's voice is so rich and beautiful. Good quality music.

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Sun Feb 18 2024
5

This is the type of album I was hoping for from a list like this. Just a great, fun time. I was dancing to this album while cooking this morning

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Mon Feb 19 2024
5

5 / 5 songs. 5 / 5 album art.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
4

Fattede intet, men det lød okay

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Fri May 14 2021
4

The music was groovy with strong melodies

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Thu May 27 2021
4

Disco alegre (aunque esto pareciera estereotipo de la música de África o del Caribe), con ritmos que suenan a artistas de Senegal o Camerún que he escuchado antes. Quizá no aprecio mucho que haya pistas muy largas, pero definitivamente como música ambiental funcionan bien. Es un disco al que regresaría sólo en momentos específicos, pero no para oír diario. Mis canciones favoritas: "Koweït, Rive Gauche", "Qui cherche trouve" y "Conte de fées". 8.5/10

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Fri Feb 19 2021
4

Música "africana". A veces me recuerda a Juan Luis Guerra.

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Sun May 02 2021
4

This right here reeks of the 90s and makes me want to go to the beach, I love it

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Thu May 27 2021
4

La verdad me deleitan las guitarras en el soukous; sí me dan ganas de bailar jajaaj. En esta nota, me gustó bastante Qui cherche trouve y la segunda parte de Désespoir y el final de Conte de Fées. Mood: Kwassa Kwassa todo el día y toda la noche.

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Thu May 27 2021
4

No conocía al artista pero fue muy interesante encontrarlo en esta losta

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Fri Jul 30 2021
4

I like this style of music.. not a compete triumph but I’m feeling generous!

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Wed Sep 29 2021
4

Eve is such a good influence :) I'm learning to appreciate this kind of music much more! Honestly super fun and unique, at least to me.

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Fri Nov 26 2021
4

I had no idea what to expect with this one but I bloody loved it.

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Fri Dec 03 2021
4

Awesome music that feels nostalgic in a strange way, not that I ever visited the Congo but it really puts you in a specific time and place.

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Thu Dec 30 2021
4

Happy music! I love this style of music - call it soukous or jit, it's impossible not to want to dance

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Fri Jan 07 2022
4

Some french, some other stuff. Pretty good

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Wed Feb 09 2022
4

Unexpected surprise. Couldn’t understand a word but really enjoyed the rhythm

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Thu Feb 24 2022
4

This is some uplifting, upbeat, refreshing music. I listen to the album twice in a row.

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Fri May 20 2022
4

Koffi Olomide is a new artist for me. This is a very happy sounding album, with some interesting rhythms throughout the album. I enjoyed listening to somethin new, even if I couldn't sing along. With only one listen, the album falls somewhere between 3 and 4 stars, but I did like it enough that I'd be willing to have a second listen.

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Sun May 29 2022
4

A lot of the music I really love is influenced by this style of music. I can hear early Vampire Weekend in this down to the tone of the guitar and the lines played (I think the mixolydian mode is used quite a bit in both). Overall, I found this album to be enjoyable and accessible and it helped me to connect Afrobeat as played by western musicians with how it’s played by Africans. Both forms are similar and involve borrowing from the traditions of the other.

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Wed Aug 10 2022
4

Conversational baritone singing - very nice and easy to listen to. Vairety of rhythms are fun. Enjoyed this one greatly.

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Wed Aug 24 2022
4

Riktigt dansant och roligt. Det svänger!

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Fri Sep 30 2022
4

Vampire Weekend owe a lot to this guy.

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Sun Oct 09 2022
4

Jag njöt av de extra mycke då ja visste att ja aldri kan lyssna pånytt

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Fri Nov 25 2022
4

Wasn’t sold on this at first, but Desespoir really hooked me. Instrumentation is interesting and lively, really glad I listened to this.

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Sun Nov 27 2022
4

Loved it. French afropop? Yes

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Wed Dec 14 2022
4

Amazing album. Just not something I would normally listen to. Still, a great listen.

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Sun Jan 22 2023
4

When I saw the album cover I instantly knew this album was going to be fantastic, any person who puts all their effort into the music and absolutely none into the album cover always produces feel good music

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Thu Feb 02 2023
4

This album caught me pleasantly by surprise. Very African good vibes, like classic African sound from the 90s. 7/10.

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Wed May 25 2022
4

Not quite a 4 for me but almost. I liked having it on in the background

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Thu Feb 16 2023
4

haut de gamme / koweït, rive gauche was a refreshing listen. i have lamented the lack of world music part of this project, so koffi olomide's presence is very appreciated. but despite my excitement, i want to be fair in my review. this album was quite fun. the beat was fast but playful. it could be soulful, or deep with african music, or even encouraging the listener to dance along. this album makes for a good introduction to this kind of music, and it's no wonder olomide is so well known in all of africa. 3.5

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Sun Mar 26 2023
4

Good fun and maybe because the sound is the new to my ears - but fresh and just simply puts you in a good mood. A tad long but not too much - I’d definitely pick this one up again

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Wed May 03 2023
4

This did seem a bit repetitive but I was still bopping along

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Mon Jun 12 2023
4

Very enjoyable music and very fun to listen to.

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Mon Jun 19 2023
4

Thoroughly enjoyable. Just a niiiiice vibe

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Mon Jun 19 2023
4

I liked this a lot! What joyful warm and rich music this is. I found it very soothing and uplifting to listen to

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Sun Jul 09 2023
4

Fun background music for dinners

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Fri Aug 25 2023
4

This one deserves more than one listen. It's good.

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Tue Sep 12 2023
4

Fun to listen to! Unfortunately, the album review spent most of the time here criticizing the choices of African music albums to include in the 1001 albums list rather than teaching me about the artist. However, it was a little vindicating to hear someone else criticize this list!

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Fri Oct 20 2023
4

I don't know how this album can even be counted as music as it's just noise and screaming noises. If this was an art istalation I would understand but you can't really call this music. I can see what they were going for but it didn't really work.

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Sun Oct 29 2023
4

love the hypnotic interwoven intricacy of melody & rhythm

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Fri Nov 10 2023
4

Delightful. I’m a big fan.

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Sun Nov 19 2023
4

Música "africana". A veces me recuerda a Juan Luis Guerra.

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Thu Nov 30 2023
4

I enjoyed approximately ⅔ of this album. If I'd heard the other ⅓ at another time, on another day, I'd probably have enjoyed it then, but the relentless sunny optimism of this music is rather taxing on a snowy November day.

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Fri Dec 01 2023
4

fun Congolese music, can see the roots of jamacan music or maybe it influenced this. Can't understand it but fun

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Fri Dec 08 2023
4

Interesting album. Much different than what I usually listen to, but I enjoyed it.

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