Gqom premier on The Fader

Gqom is a South African house genre that’s taking the coastal town of Durban by storm. In The FADER back in 2013, Jumping Back Slash described it as “a more broken sound, a lot more minimal than normal SA house and rarely four to the floor, it’s a raw sound.” Now that the genre is gaining […]

June 19th, 2015|NEWS|

Owiny Sigoma Band Premiere ‘Changaa Attack’

London-Nairobi’s Owiny Sigoma Band, a revolving collective formed by Western Kenyan musicians and UK artists, come through with “Changaa Attack,” the new single off their forthcoming third album Nyanza. Recorded in percussionist Charles Owoko and nyatiti player Joseph Nyamungu‘s home of Nyanza Province, Owiny Sigoma Band’s new full-length LP seeks to explore the intricacies of Luo music.
The hypnotizing “Changaa Attack” — named after the potent Kenyan homebrew ‘changaa’ […]

May 26th, 2015|NEWS|

Spoek Mathambo’s ‘Future Sound Of Mzansi’ (Part 1)

‘Future Sound of Mzansi’ is Spoek Mathambo and Lebogang Rasethaba’s powerful new documentary about South African electronic music. Part one introduces the new sounds coming out of the townships and urban areas of cities like Durban, Cape Town, and Johannesburg. It becomes abundantly clear that regionalism is extremely important in the development of genres like […]

May 24th, 2015|NEWS|

Terakaft “Alone” (Outhere)

“Desert Blues”, the usual tag for Saharan Tuareg bands like Terakaft and Tinariwen, doesn’t do justice to their diversity. On their last album, Kel Tamasheq, and this fifth offering, Terakaft have stretched into new sonic territory, helped by the deft production of Justin Adams. The familiar handclaps, drones and sinuous guitar lines are all present, […]

May 19th, 2015|NEWS|

Mingiedi Mawangu R.I.P.

Mingiedi Mawangu passed away last night, in Kinshasa. He was 85. He founded Konono No.1 in the 1960s and invented his own electrified likembe, which gave Konono No.1 its distinctive sound. He led the band and toured with them until a few years ago. He will be dearly missed by his son Augustin and the rest of […]

April 16th, 2015|NEWS|

1:54 Contemporary African Art, New York and London

Europe’s leading art fair dedicated to Contemporary African Art will make its New York debut from 15-17 May 2015. The third edition of 1:54 London will be held from 15 to 18 October 2015.

A reference to fifty-four countries that constitute the African continent, the title of 1:54 establishes the parameters of the fair’s ethos: as a […]

April 8th, 2015|NEWS|

Fantasma Live

South Africa’s Fantasma perform their single Basbizile at the 100 Club in central London exclusively for the Guardian. The song appears on their debut album Free Love, released on Soundway Records, and incorporates genre-bending elements of hip-hop, electronica and South African traditional music. Here Fantasma are: Spoek Mathambo on vocals and electronics, Bhekisenzo Cele on […]

April 2nd, 2015|NEWS|

Fantasma “Free Love” (SoundWay Rec.)

Last year, musician Spoek Mathambo and film-maker Lebo Rasethaba explored the myriad forms of South African music in the feature-length documentary The Future Sounds of Mzansi. Now Mathambo is taking his own music in genuinely astonishing directions with Fantasma, a collective including producer DJ Spoko, associated with Pretoria’s “bacardi house” scene and the DJ Mujava […]

March 20th, 2015|NEWS|

Africa Express Shares ‘Terry Riley’s In C Mali’ Film

This week Africa Express released Terry Riley’s In C Mali, the first “African version” of minimalist composer Terry Riley‘s 1964 classic “In C.” This new interpretation of the composition was recorded at the same Bamako Maison des Jeunes youth club that housed the studio for Africa Express’ previous LP. The recording features Bamako artists Adama Koita, Bijou, Cheick Diallo & Modibo Diawara alongside the likes of Damon Albarn, […]

January 28th, 2015|NEWS|

Petite Noir “The King of Anxiety EP”

Yannick Ilunga, a 24-year-old from Cape Town, grew up singing in church, played in a metalcore band where he sounded like this, and then discovered Kanye West’s 808s & Heartbreak. Now, as Petite Noir, he sings in a deep, sonorous voice and plays an itchy, gently polyrhythmic mix of music that he has cannily packaged in interviews as […]

January 24th, 2015|NEWS|