I only subscribe to a few magazines, but by far I'm most excited when I find the latest issue of Wax Poetics in my mailbox. When it comes to diggin' out the story behind the 45 or LP that you struck gold on in diggin' out of some crate somewhere, no one does a better job than these guys. While the newstand price might seem a little steep (it's not really), I highly recommend signing yourself up for a subscription to not only get it at a better price, but also ensure that you don't miss an issue. To make the pot a little sweeter, they've also taken to throwing in a limited production 45 made especially by WP for WP that features a pair of killer tracks. And that's where I first heard (sort of) Chico Mann back in February in their Africa issue. (I say sort of because they were also featured on a benefit compilation Funk Aid for Africa I wrote about back in November of 2009, though at the time I didn't dig deep into them)
Fast forward to October when WP decided to deepen their connection with Chico Mann by bringing them on board their very own limited and prestigious record label for the release of the group's new album, Analog Drift. The group has pared itself down to a trio headed up by Marcos Garcia (who also plays in Antibalas and Ocote Soul Sounds) who you might guess, based on my previous references above, base their sound on African influences. You also might guess, based on the title of their latest release, that they push out a synthesized sound, and you'd be correct. It's definitely got an electronic, almost 80's feel to it that in addition draws upon some Cuban influences as well. Perhaps the most interesting point in the album comes when Mann covers the Talking Head song Once In A Lifetime, definitely an original take on it to say the least.