Film Review – WITCH: We Intend to Cause Havoc

It’s not something you’d probably ever think about but in most of the English-speaking Western world we’re very myopic when it comes to the range of music we listen to. It’s almost all in our (main) native tongue and the vast majority comes from North America, Australasia, Britain or Ireland. It’s very rare to hear anything sung in say French or Spanish, but also, outside of a few high-profile artists, anything from Africa.

Africa is (obviously) a huge and wildly diverse continent, overflowing with a myriad of languages, histories and cultures. Whilst many famous European or North American musicians have been influenced by traditional music from Alkebulan, it works both ways. Take Zamrock, for example. Combining indigenous sounds with various popular styles of rock, it took Zambia by storm during the 1970s. WITCH: We Intend to Cause Havoc traces a path back to the most popular band of the era.

WITCH: We Intend to Cause Havoc is a documentary that starts out as one man’s journey to unearth a largely forgotten band into something entirely different. The way director Gio Arlotta approaches his subject is unorthodox, to say the least, but the winner here is the music. The sheer vibrancy and joyfulness of the African rhythms mesh with lead singer Jagari’s own troubling and personal journey. Making WITCH: We Intend to Cause Havoc an unusual and entertaining rollercoaster ride.

WITCH: We Intend to Cause Havoc is in select cinemas and on demand on 2 July.

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