Africa Seven’s next installment returns to Cameroon with a special edition version of Momo Joseph’s in-demand LP, “War For Ground”, with three extra tracks. Momo may be better known for his work as an actor, having featured in such titles as “La Haine” (1995) and “The African” (1983), but his small foray into music is definitely memorable as he lays it out in true Afro-Boogie style. Apart from two singles, “War For Ground” represents Momo’s only other body of work, and only studio album which was self-released in 1983. With this “Edition Speciale” reissue we provide you all the originals from “War For Ground” remastered alongside his party-time classic “Cameroon Airline”, “Love Africa Soul” and his lesser known tack “Oh Momo”.
The A-side starts with “Africain”, which also featured on our compilation “Africa Airways Four”. Glistening synth lines work it out over the top of romantic guitars, while the continual and hypnotic vocal chant of “Africa” tells you exactly where this music is coming from and what it means. The tempo creeps up a bit with “N’Gon Le Bek” which again takes advantage of driving guitar lines, this time facing off with the horn section. The last cut on the A-Side is “Out Side No Fine”, which flows great after the previous two, keeping up the same aesthetic with a bit more of a tropical feel to it.
The B-side kicks off with the title track “War For Ground”. In this one Momo starts off rather melancholic before things end more triumphantly with the backing vocals and horn section again providing much of the driving force. The final two tracks on this record make up the “Edition Speciale” element of this reissue. “Love Africa Soul”, taken from Momo’s 1980 single of the same name, at first seems to be one of the more straight forward disco led tracks on this release until an ecstatic synth line breaks things up in a forward thinking break down before a trademark Momo groove kicks back in. The other track featured on that single was"Cameroun Airlines", a bonafied afro-disco classic. Next we delved into the vault and unearthed a recording session for “Oh Momo”, this never released version of the track reflects a slightly different side of the signer, with a more afrobeat feel.
This “Edition Speciale” version of “War For Ground” offers a thorough observation of Momo Joseph’s work as a musician and looks to help shine a light on Momo’s career and musical genius.
Momo Joseph, "War for Ground"