Blick Bassy – 1958

Album Review | No Format | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5

Reflecting on the events that led to the independence of his native Cameroon, Blick Bassy’s tender song cycle showcases a rather affecting relationship between his own highly distinctive vocal dexterity and the fine performances provided by the small gathering of musicians, including Clement Petit on cello, Alexi Merrill on trumpet and keyboards and Johan Blanc on trombone. At the centre of the album, and its chief subject, is the anti-colonialist leader of the Popular Union of Cameroon, Ruben Um Nyobé, who in 1958 was killed by French troops, an episode pretty much suppressed until recently. In an effort to iron out the skewed history of his homeland as chronicled by his biased educators, Bassy employs a tender approach to highlight the truth behind his country’s troubled past, whilst delivering eleven utterly soothing songs, including the dreamy “Where We Go”, which almost abruptly concludes the album.