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Hugh Masekela - Stimela (The Coal Train)

Genre: world

A familiar sound at hi-fi shows, this one, and with good reason. There is real anger and emphatic playing in this track but on the wrong system it simply fails to come across. It opens with a percussion crescendo which can seem merely to get louder but to no good effect. On the right system the percussion builds with a real sense of increasing energy and urgency. Also the vocals (it’s spoken rather than sung) and playing are suffused with anger and awareness of great injustice, whereas some systems can make it sound like Masekela is simply reading from a list.