This is Bowpi’s current favorite record: Songs of the Congo as sung by the Troubadours of King Baudouin, a choir of boys from Kamina, the Belgian Congo, recorded in the 1960s (?) and released on Epic Records, International Series. Some fascinating musical hybridization here. Though the record sleeve description claims that the “Missa Luba,” featured on Side B, is “a Mass in pure Congo style, without any influences of Western music,” the performance aesthetics are still very much under Western missionary guidance (the group is organized by Father Guido Haazen, a Belgian priest), harmonizing in orchestrated unison and recorded in a sonorous facility reminiscent of a vaulted church.
I like the muddled, echo-laden sound of the recording. And Bowpi likes the drums. Her ears twitch continuously when we’ve listened to this record, as we have the past couple mornings.
So I ask, in all seriousness — does your pet have a favorite album?
(Edited to add that Bowdu’s favorite band is はっぴいえんど, or Happy End, a Japanese folk-rock group from the 1970s featuring Haruomi Hosono and others. We’re not sure if he likes the yellow album or the white album more, as he grew up listening to plenty of both. His least favorite band is Fantômas, whose heavy metal chords in the opening track of Director’s Cut made him piss himself as a puppy.
Indeed, we subject our pets to all sorts of musical pleasures and tortures here at the House of Two Bows.)