sat 13/07/2024

African music

Album: Kokoko! - Butu

Kokoko! hail from the Democratic Republic of Congo (formely Zaire), and specifically from Kinshasa, a source over the years of a great deal of irresistible dance music. On their second album, more electronic than the last (Fongola -2019), traces of...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 84: Ibibio Sound Machine, Dave Clarke, Eliza Rose, Billy Idol, Bodega, Mui Zyu and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHAriel Sharratt & Matthias Kom Never Work (BB*Island) + Ella Ronen The Girl With No Skin (BB*Island)Two offbeat albums from the uncategorisable Hamburg label BB*Island. They are home to the literary indie outfit The Burning Hell...

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Album: Bab L'Bluz - Swaken

Bab L’Bluz are a French-Moroccan four-piece that play a tasty blend of fiery psychedelic rock backed up with hypnotic North African gnawa rhythms. Featuring electric awisha lute, guembri, percussion and castanet-like qraqeb rather than more...

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Album: Mdou Moctar - Funeral for Justice

Despite its title, Mdou Moctar’s new album is no slow-paced mournful dirge. In fact, it is louder, faster and more overtly political than any of his band’s previous discs – not so much desert blues as desert punk.Taking up the twin causes of the...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 83: Deep Purple, Annie Anxiety, Ghetts, WHAM!, Kaiser Chiefs, Butthole Surfers and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHLondon Afrobeat Collective Esengo (Canopy)The weather has not been kind to the UK lately, pelting it daily with endless drizzle and gloom. So wrap your ears around this, a mini-album that will infuse any room with blazing sunshine...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 82: Human League, Hawkwind, Roberta Flack, Kid Acne, Photek, Rudimentary Peni and more

VINYL OF THE MONTHMito y Comadre Guajirando (ZZK)Mito y Comadre are Guillermo Lares and Shana Comadre, a Bogota-based pair of Venezuelans whose debut album is produced by Christian Castagno (a man who’s more likely to be found helming outings by...

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Album: Les Amazones d'Afrique - Musow Danse

This year marks ten years since Les Amazones d’Afrique first came together in Mali under the guidance of those giants of African pop, Mamani Keȋta, Oumou Sangare and Mariam Doumbia. It also sees the release of their third album, Musow Danse – but...

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Albums of the Year 2023: Janelle Monáe - The Age of Pleasure

It was a year of bleak and brutal conflict, ugly and stupid imposition of power, overt Fascism in the mainstream public sphere, decay of infrastructure and apocalyptic weather. So what better than a record of total pleasure? And Janelle Monáe’s...

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Trans Musicales Festival 2023 review - a smorgasbord of global sounds

FRIDAYRennes Airport Parc Expo is about three miles west of the city. It’s vast, consisting of 110,000 metres of cavernous warehouse-like hangars, and has hosted everything from Holiday on Ice to France’s hugest annual agricultural conference. Every...

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theartsdesk on Vinyl 81: Nobro, Adrian Sherwood, Evian Christ, Ozric Tentacles, Maple Glider, Viken Arman and more

The first of two December theartsdesk on Vinyls which will appear in quick succession. This one's mostly new artists. The next one will be our Christmas Special, filled with seasonal fare and present-suitable reissues and boxsets. For the best...

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Album: TONN3RR3 x BIKAY3 - It's a Bomb

Bony Biyake, whose vocals grace this delicious soup of ancient and modern sounds, from Europe and the Congo, once sang in a soukous band, and then made his name in collaborations with the French musical magician, the late Hector Zazou. Their most...

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Album: Burna Boy - I Told Them...

There’s been a lot of flak flying around this album already. It’s mainly been triggered by Burna Boy’s public activities which have included disparaging the wider Afrobeats music scene of West Africa, and some somewhat overcooked expressions of his...

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