The title of this album, “Green Light”, is this signal which symbolizes the social control generated by the economic and political system prevailing in the Western world.
Ray Lema choose to speak in the most epurate way, just with an acoustic piano and voices. Cathy Renoir and Isabel Gonzalez, weave the subtle harmonies they have learned to develop for many years alongside their leader. Here and there, the congolese musician, So Kalmery, suggests some colors with a didgeridoo (a long traditional australian trunk from the Aboriginal), whose long breath sometimes melts with the resonances of the piano : an amazing and beautiful effect. Ray Lema seems to mean it’s time to get to the point. On our planet with the reign of injustice, it is urgent to speak without subterfuge, eyes in the eyes. Even the piano has been played turning its back to any technical demonstration. It shows a radical rejection of the virtuosity. But, in harmony with his absolute mastery of rhythm, Ray Lema plays his piano sometimes slight, sometimes with a deep pulse, vital – like heart. And along the tracks, a luminous transparency, as offering a serene nudity without any makeup.
Fara C (Humanity – April 9, 1996)
CD Track List :
- GREEN LIGHT
- SOMA LOBA
- MUNGU WA OVYO
- KOTEJA INTRO
Ray LEMA : Vocals, piano, percussion ; Cathy RENOIR & Isabel GONZALEZ: Vocals; So KALMERY: didgeridoo on (3),(8),(13) ; Marie-Philomene NGA: backing-vocals on (4) All Titles by : Ray LEMA, except : (2)-Manu DIBANGO; (7)-BOSMEN/Ray LEMA ; Recorded at Studio Davout (Paris) – Production : Buda Musique (1996) ; ArtWork: Bruno Broussard ; Photos: Anita GRÉGOIRE