The novelty of an Ottawa-based Afrobeat band pulling off the genre with fire and reverence has worn off with Souljazz Orchestra's success. However, you still can't listen to this without being affected by that background information.
If these were unreleased vintage recordings rescued from a Nigerian basement, we'd be cheering at how consistently hot the grooves are. But instead we're stuck wondering if there's something a bit cheap about reproducing this feel so authentically without mixing in more contemporary sounds or North American influences. Luckily, by the third track (People, People), they bring other flavours into the mix, with more overt forays into funk and jazz. A little more irreverence and Manifesto would be amazing.