Audio

Cape Town Label DRK&LVLY's 'Beauty And The Beats Vol.1'

Cape Town label DRK&LVLY drops the first in a series of South African electronic music compilations, 'Beauty And The Beats Vol.1.'


Photography & design by DRK&LVLY Creative

Cape Town's DRK&LVLY Records is a recent addition to South Africa's electronic music landscape founded a few months back by producer/DJ SLABOFMISUSE. This week the multi-genre label jumped on our radar with the launch of their Beauty And The Beats event and compilation series. Unveiled on Tuesday, the inaugural eleven track compilation is a hand-selected showcase of South African producers. Representing Cape Town beatmaking are Maramza, Card On Spokes, Dank, Seafood (Card On Spokes + Dank), Cutting Gems, Wildebeats, and labelhead SLABOFMISUSE himself. Featured earlier this week on the Micr.pluto mixed/arranged Subterranean Wavelength compilation (which Okayafrica premiered), The Watermark High and Hawkword continue to put Joburg's experimental beat scene on the map with their contributions, while Durban's electro-violin duo Veranda Panda adds their signature downtempo etherealism and PTA's Phizicist brings a jumpy, spacey dancefloor track to the mix. Stream Beauty And The Beats Vol.1 in full below and look out for more from DRK&LVLY coming up.

Interview

Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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