It’s often a hard pill to swallow when celebrities get all political on us. It can be heavy-handed, disingenuous, and, frankly, annoying. But the 15-plus members of the Brooklyn-based Afrobeat collective Antibalas aren’t celebrities, nor do they have any aspiration to be. In a time when few musicians are using their medium to change the world, Antibalas espouse their political views by rocking the house.
While virtually unknown to mainstream listeners, Antibalas have long been a spin-off favorite of hardcore “underground” hip-hop fans of Dead Prez, the Roots, Reflection Eternal and Mos Def, who himself has turned up at an Antibalas show or two.
Antibalas is becoming one of my favorite groups. If you like Fela, you’ll love their music.