On Record ONB113
Producers: Steve Cooks, Themba Mawelela & Ronnie Robot
Composers: S. Cooks, T. Mawelela, K. Botha
Recorded at: Cut 'n Mix Studios
Between 1988's Roadblock and 1990's Alien Town (Joburg), Mafika Shabalala put out Killer, a 6-track album that blended innovative production, conscious messages and classic disco beats. The title track is an eloquent anti-crime anthem, while "Lady Selborne" commemorates forced removals from the multiracial township in Pretoria along the picturesque banks of the Swart Spruit and within view of the Union Buildings:
"Memories of life of riverside, ever since the day Selborne died. Some things are forgotten, let's sing to the children: we must build a better future, don't let it happen."
"King (Martin Luther)" samples MLK's most famous speech and sends a powerful message against assassination, at a time when the nation's leaders were still languishing in prison or in exile, three years before SACP leader Chris Hani was gunned down at the dawn of democracy:
"You can hide from the fact if you choose, but you can't heal the memory. There are times when there's nothing to lose, special moments in history. You won't find the truth through interrogation, you won't change the future with assassination."
Killer may sound like just another pre-kwaito bubblegum album, but there is far more to Killer than what meets the ear on first listen, setting it apart from most others of the time.