Founded in 1996 by the German-Nigerian lead singer Ade Bantu, his brother Abiodun Odukoya and Patrice, BANTU have been one of the West African acts transforming the legacy of King Sunny Adé and Fela Kuti into the soundtrack of the continent. The group is distinguished by the fact that while created and fronted by vocalist Ade Bantu, it is unmistakably a collective, collaborative effort. When you have a band this strong, this tight where everyone gets to shine, magic happens. And once again with this new album, the 13-piece ensemble is pushing the boundaries of funkiness and political prowess for contemporary music, in Africa or globally.
From their first release, “No Vernacular in 1996 to the present, BANTU has scored a series of hits across Europe and Africa garnering major awards. Indeed, the list of artists who’ve collaborated with BANTU is a testament to the power, originality and talent of the band: an international cornucopia including UB40, Tony Allen, Orlando Julius, Brothers Keepers (which they created), Gentleman, Ebenezer Obey and Burna Boy just to name a few. These collaborations helped the band earn several major Continental awards, including the Kora Awards (the Pan African equivalent of the Grammys) for “Best Group West Africa” and “Best Group Africa”.
Their latest release Everybody Get Agenda is nothing short of a musical sensation – Afrobeat, Funk and Soul seamlessly flow into one another as they merge with Jazz, Highlife, Hiphop and Yoruba music. The lyrics address issues around corruption, injustice, migration, xenophobia and urban alienation while a guest appearance by Seun Kuti on “Yeye Theory” rounds up this solid long player. There is no doubt that with Everybody Get Agenda BANTU has not just charted new musical territory but reached it and planted the flag.