From Kinshasa

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From Kinshasa
Mbongwana-star-from-kinshasa-450sq 0.jpg
Studio album by Mbongwana Star
Released May 19, 2015 (2015-05-19)
Length 47:30
Label World Circuit
  • Doctor L
  • Michel Winter (exec.)

From Kinshasa is the debut studio album by Congolese band Mbongwana Star, released on May 19, 2015 on World Circuit.


The album's title was originally planned to be From Kinshasa to the Moon: "But World Circuit, with their English not being very strong, didn’t really catch that part! But a lot of the press are taking it on now, so I phoned [World Circuit] to say that they really shouldn’t have changed the title as it conveys the idea that your preconceptions about music from certain places might not be quite right. It’s from a city where you wouldn’t imagine that you’d find all these artists. The guy on the cover is a performance artist and there are tons of people in the city making incredible punky art. Kinshasa’s very good for that, there’s a big artistic subculture and people are instinctive in the way they work."[1]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
Drowned in Sound10/10[4]
The Guardian5/5 stars[5]
The Irish Times4/5 stars[6]
Mojo4/5 stars[7]
musicOMH4.5/5 stars[8]
Record Collector4/5 stars[10]

From Kinshasa received widespread critical acclaim upon its release. It holds a weighted mean of 88 out of 100 from Metacritic, based on 13 critics,[2] while on another aggregate site AnyDecentMusic?, it holds an 8.6 out of ten, also a weighted average.[13]

Alexis Petridis of The Guardian gave a five-star review of From Kinshasa, describing the album as "like arriving in a bustling, unfamiliar city, a very long way from home: a gripping mix of excitement, apprehension and sensory overload."[5] In his ten-out-of-ten review for Drowned in Sound, Tristan Bath called it "a really classic record for the ages", honoring it as a turning point for music released by African artists.[4] Spin scored the album a nine out of ten, saying that it contributes new aspects in urban music.[11]

From Kinshasa was one of NPR Music's and Rolling Stone's favorite albums of the first half of 2015.[14][15]

Track list[edit]

1."From Kinshasa to the moon"2:24
5."Coco Blues"5:39
8."Kimpala Pala"4:28
10."1 million c'est quoi?"5:02


  1. ^ Hulyer, Jake (8 June 2015). "From Kinshasa to the Moon: Mbongwana Star's Doctor L talks Afrobeat and appropriation". Fact. The Vinyl Factory. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Reviews for From Kinshasa by Mbongwana Star". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  3. ^ Annan, Nick (16 June 2015). "Mbongwana Star - From Kinshasa". Clash. Music Republic Ltd. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  4. ^ a b Bath, Tristan (3 June 2015). "Album Review: Mbongwana Star - From Kinshasa". Drowned in Sound. Silentway. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  5. ^ a b Petridis, Alexis (14 May 2015). "Mbongwana Star: From Kinshasa review – thrillingly wrong-footing Congolese music". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  6. ^ Wood, Nigel (22 May 2015). "Mbongwana Star: From Kinshasa | Album Review". The Irish Times. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  7. ^ Hutcheon, David (26 May 2015). "Mbongwana Star – From Kinshasa". Mojo. Bauer Media Group. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  8. ^ Paton, Daniel (28 May 2015). "Mbongwana Star – From Kinshasa". musicOMH. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  9. ^ "Five Great Albums That May Have Passed You By This Week". NME. Inspire. 14 July 2015. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  10. ^ Bowler, Paul. "Mbongwana Star – From Kinshasa". Record Collector. Diamond Publishing. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  11. ^ a b Gubbels, Jason (14 August 2015). "SPIN World Report: Mbongwana Star's Congolese Street Music, Fabiano Do Nascimento's Afro-Brazilian Folk Shredding". Spin. SpinMedia. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  12. ^ Uncut. June 2015, p.78.
  13. ^ "From Kinshasa by Mbongwana Star". AnyDecentMusic?. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  14. ^ "NPR Music's 25 Favorite Albums Of 2015 (So Far)". NPR Music. 29 June 2015. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  15. ^ "45 Best Albums of 2015 So Far". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media. 16 June 2015. Retrieved 25 August 2015.