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Audio: Olugbenga 'Love Is The Devil In The Details' [Premiere]


When not playing in Metronomy, London/Lagos' Olugbenga has been keeping busy crafting a slew of remixes — many of which you can hear in his AIYE mixtape — as well as his own experimental concoctions. Marking another step towards production, Olugbenga's collected some of his choice originals in the upcoming Epic & Blues EP, which drops as a continous mix July 23 over at his Facebook.

Leading up to the release, Olugbenga will be giving away a free song every day of the week at a number of different sites. Today we have "Love Is The Devil In The Details," the opening track on Epic & Blues. Olugbenga explains the tune:

"One stand that ties together all the music I love is emotional commitment. Whether it's metal, gospel or Autechre-style electronic music, I respond to music that communicates absolute belief on the part of its creators. With Epic & Blues I felt like I'd finally reached the point where I could convey some of my belief and emotional commitment through my production.

["Love Is The Devil In The Details"] was actually the final [track] to be completed and it balances my love for both positivity and melancholy in music. I also wanted to start the EP with something that referenced a bunch of the other songs - so if you listen closely, you'll hear snatches and fragments from the tracks that follow. As someone who usually starts putting a track together with the drums, it was fun doing something where the rhythm came from elsewhere"

Download "Love Is The Devil In The Details" below and hear yesterday's free tune over at Clash. Epic & Blues is out July 23.

Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

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