Stream 'Eye of the Sun,' the debut EP from Spoek Mathambo and DJ Spoko's South African "supergroup" Fantasma, plus watch the "Fafi" video.
Image by Travys Owen
Words by Alyssa Klein and Baba Ali
For months now we've anticipated the much welcomed debut EP from five-man South African "supergroup" Fantasma. The band, which unites site favorites Spoek Mathambo and DJ Spoko with guitarist André Geldenhuys (from Cape Town electric blues duo Machineri), drummer Michael Buchanan and Durban's maskandi multi-instrumentalist Bhekisenzo Cele, have been teasing us in recent weeks with a string of new tracks, including the ethereal military-snared "Sefty Belt" with heavenly-voiced Philly native Josiahwise Is The Serpentwithfeet and their frenetic title song "Eye of the Sun" plus its spacey, downtempo remix from British producer My Panda Shall Fly. In the lead-up to the full release this Monday, November 10th, Eye of the Sun has been streaming all week via Dazed. Spoek took to facebook to explain his excitement:
"Glad to finally share what I've been working on this year. It's been such an amazing journey with Fantasma. This 5-track EP is the introduction. We are following up in Feb with our album FREELOVE.
Been trying to get this sound for years now. I tried to get the beats with first album Mshini Wam, but couldn't really get the right feel and slacked on lyrics. I tried to get the depth on my second album, but got derailed somewhere along the line."
The group also shared their debut music video this week for Eye of the Sun closer, "Fafi." Shot in black and white, the video pretty much sums up the psychedelic desert feast we've seen from Fantasma courtesy of Kent Andreasen's hypnotic lens. Speaking on the track, Spoek said:
"Fafi or M'china as it's also known is a kind of gambling/numbers racket that's common in South Africa. A lot of the numbers system is a bit mystical in the sense that people's dreams end up representing different numbers and possibly big wins. I always imagine us in a vast desert with this one, I think it's one of our most interesting pieces. What originally started out as a grime beat I was working on took on a whole other turn as our various influences came together. From maskandi to northern African desert rock, Congolese guitar runs, synth jams, to four to the floor stompers."