After summer 2008’s three-month, international tour (highlighted by performances at both Pitchfork and Roskilde festivals), Extra Golden settled down to record the follow-up to their acclaimed Hera Ma Nono. The result is Thank You Very Quickly, a six-song wonder of a record whose joyous danceable anthems were crafted in the wake of political and economic upheaval in Kenya.
Flexibility, resilience, and invention have always been keys to Extra Golden’s success, and the recording process of Thank You Very Quickly was no exception. The basic tracks were recorded in one day, with the group set up in the third floor hallway/laundry room of guitarist Ian Eagleson’s parents’ house. While perhaps not the ideal studio situation, this arrangement went a long way to confirm the group’s belief that “tight quarters = tight grooves”. Additional tracking was done in the Pocono Mountains and again, back at the Eagleson’s. The record was mixed in Washington, DC, with Jonathan Kreinik and Nikhil Ranade.
While Extra Golden’s first two albums served as thesis and antithesis, Thank You Very Quickly showcases a new level of artistry that could only be referred to as synthesis. That is to say that Extra Golden is no longer an experiment or “collaborative encounter”, but (wait for it!) a band. For evidence of this evolution, one need look no further than the album’s fierce opener, “Gimakiny Akia”, a dance-floor choogler for high altitudes. “Fantasies of the Orient” has a spring in its step while reminding the listener that one doesn’t have to live as a monkey to find happiness. Kenyan schoolchildren sing songs like “Piny Yore Yore”, minus the shimmering guitars and explosive tom-tom rolls. The lysergic blues/disco groove of “Anyango” is sure to be a huge hit - with a psychedelic surprise for the heads. Drummer Onyango Wuod Omari steps out front on “Ukimwi”, a passionate plea to destroy AIDS. Finally, the album’s title track and closer extends a humble thanks to all of the group’s fans who donated money to keep Extra Golden’s families alive and safe amidst Kenya’s post-election violence of early 2008. Though musically quite progressive, Thank You Very Quickly also consciously recalls many elements of the pre-digital age - from the album’s overall look and length, to its “live” drum sound and organic guitar tones.
Extra Golden is proud to present its third album, Thank You Very Quickly, a powerful sonic statement that will have fans and critics alike showing their gratitude to the group for a very, very long time. The fun and joy expressed is remarkable when one considers the political and geographic obstacles the group has continuously overcome. Extra Golden will be on the prestigious African Soul Rebels tour of the UK in March, along with international stars Oliver Mtudkudzi and Baaba Maal, which will give them the opportunity to extend their gratitude in the best way they know how - from the stage.
Jakolando ( live )
Obama ( live )