Music lovers in Cameroon now have a new album to find solace in, amidst invading Ghanaian, Nigerian and Ivorian music. A new Yaounde-based music band called "The Chopping Tools" has released its maiden album with lead song "Ghosts" to reiterate Cameroonians' musical knowhow for which the country was once popular throughout Africa.
The new album, "Ghosts", that was presented in the Bois d'Ebène cabaret in Yaounde last Thursday July 11, 2013 revealed a new trend that produces a cross-over between traditional rhythms such as Bikutsi, Makossa, Mangambeu, Ekang and Mbala, among others and modern sounds from rock, jazz, pop, classical and even Celtic music.
Composed of talented musicians such as Cyrille Nkono (bass guitar), Billy Ngomane (trumpets) and most especially Muriel Laïla as lead singer, "The Chopping Tools" music band showcases a variety of themes. In the lead song, "Ghosts", the band revisits the triumph of good over evil. Love is the main message in tracks such as "Ai Wa", "Endless love" and "My heart belongs to you" while "Forest Song" dwells on the need to protect the environment. "Lily" marks the band's stand against violence on women.
From track to track, the talents of the musicians could be felt in the instrumentation backing the angelic voice of Muriel Laïla which agreeably reminds many of Late Miriam Makeba.
According to the promoter of the band, Cyrille Tollo, the name "The Chopping Tools" was inspired from some of the oldest tools made by man two million years ago. "Our creed is to promote our culture and participate in our own way in writing a new page of Cameroon's music," Cyrille Tollo told Cameroon Tribune. Most of the 15 tracks are in English even though the artistes are French-speaking. "This is simply because Cameroon is bilingual. Generally, Anglophones make efforts to sing in French. We wanted young Francophones to also sing in English in order to strengthen the feeling of belonging to the Cameroonian nation that is united in its diversity" explained Cyrille Tollo.
The album has been put on sale in music stores around the country and over the Internet, where it is available on i-tunes and Amazon.