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Mawimbi Collective's Club Music Blends 'Ghetto House' & Modern Highlife

Paris-based collective Mawimbi premiere their 9-track debut album, a collection of ghetto house and modern highlife-influenced club tracks.


Cover design by Clément Vincent / Viatic

Paris-based collective and nascent label Mawimbi is dropping their self-titled debut album this month, a compilation of 9 solid tracks that reflect their diverse and unique take on African-influenced club music. For the past two years, the Mawimbi DJs and producers have made a name for themselves by breathing new life into France’s club scene with their infectious grooves. The collective's music navigates between genres and eras in an unconventional way, seamlessly blending ghetto house, modern highlife and shamanic techno into their own dance strain. Collaborations with innovative artists such as South Africa’s Mo Laudi and DJ Shimza, Berlin’s Africaine 808, London afro-bass prodigies The Busy Twist & Drumtalk, and afro-house big shot Jose Marquez have helped shape their sonic identity.

There's a number of tracks that stand out in Mawimbi's debut full-length. The opening song "Ketjak," by Parisian producer Loâzo, features a deep downtempo beat built around a koto loop that gradually picks up in intensity, leading to a faster climax with its shouting vocals and distorted techno drum patterns. "Kejtak" is probably the release’s edgiest track, somewhat reminiscent of débruit’s superbly original work. "More Sekele Movement" takes a trip back to the future — a classic Cameroonian 'sekele' disco stomper aptly remixed by Vulkandance residents Africaine 808, who master the art of balancing respect for the original while infusing their own contemporary club touch.

The highly-percussive "Mo Fiya," by prolific afro-latin duo Umoja, keeps it lively on the drum front and features a repetitive vocal sample that gives the track its name. "Sogoni Kalimba" is a deep journey into the healing tones of the kalimba by 10 Foot Ballerina, an Atlanta-via-Detroit-via-Berlin native now studying music in Windhoek, Namibia. Jenovah's "Afrikaan Beat 2.0" isn't your typical afro-house track, drawing instead from UK bass, driven by strong afrobeat drum patterns and ghetto house chopped-up vocals — all deeply energetic sounds for the dancefloor. Meanwhile, Amsterdam electro-afrobeat band Umeme Afrorave's "Agama" is a catchy tune with heavy synthesizer sounds, kalimba melodies and aerial vocals. Don't sleep on their upcoming album to be released next month on the Mawimbi label.

Stream our exclusive of Mawimbi's debut album above, before its official April 27 release on Mawimbi’s bandcamp. The album is backed by a 4-track EP being pressed on limited edition 12" vinyl.

Interview

Interview: Wavy The Creator Is Ready to See You Now

The multidisciplinary Nigerian-American artist on tapping into all her creative outlets, creating interesting things, releasing a new single and life during quarantine.

A trip canceled, plans interrupted, projects stalled. It is six months now since Wavy the Creator has had to make a stop at an undisclosed location to go into quarantine and get away from the eye of the pandemic.

The professional recording artist, photographer, writer, fashion artist, designer, and evolving creative has been spending all of this time in a house occupied by other creatives. This situation is ideal. At least for an artist like Wavy who is always in a rapid motion of creating and bringing interesting things to life. The energy around the house is robust enough to tap from and infuse into any of her numerous creative outlets. Sometimes, they also inspire trips into new creative territories. Most recently, for Wavy, are self-taught lessons on a bass guitar.

Wavy's days in this house are not without a pattern, of course. But some of the rituals and personal rules she drew up for herself, like many of us did for internal direction, at the beginning of the pandemic have been rewritten, adjusted, and sometimes ditched altogether. Some days start early and end late. Some find her at her sewing machine fixing up thrift clothes to fit her taste, a skill she picked up to earn extra cash while in college, others find her hard at work in the studio, writing or recording music.

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