Panther & the Supafly go down a retro path in Nkazi

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      Nkazi (Independent)

      A five-piece band led by Josh Matumona, Panther & the Supafly generated some buzz at last year’s LIVE at Squamish, their high-energy rock-meets-rap style tailor-made for aimless festival crowds. Matumona and his mates seem to have emerged from a time capsule marked “1993”, their sound borrowing heavily from the collected works of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Roots, and Sublime. That’s a winning formula for a live show, and with its polished seven-track EP, Nkazi, the local unit makes a convincing pitch to the kind of people who buy K’Naan records.

      Matumona (aka Panther) is a likable frontman, a just-good-enough rapper and singer who’s nailed the wacky positivity that seems to be the reigning pop sentiment of the day. His backing players, meanwhile, dutifully hit all their marks, variously impersonating a rap-metal outfit (“Swaggapuff”), a ska-punk band (“Chronicles”), and an arena-rock troupe (“Nightmare”). Well-played, expertly recorded, Nkazi would surely have found a sizable audience 20 years ago. Will Matumona make a commercial splash today? You can decide for yourself tonight (February 2) when Panther & the Supafly play Fortune Sound Club.