‘Zelalem,’ An EP & Vintage Ethiopian Folk Mixtape From Producer Mikael Seifu
Ethiopian beatmaker Mikael Seifu shares his new EP 'Zelalem' and a 50-minute vintage Ethiopian folk mixtape.
Zelalem EP cover.
As we’ve told you, we’re really excited for Mikael Seifu’s new EP Zelalem. The Addis-Ababa-based producer’s had a hold on our ears since we first came across his Ethiopiyawi Electronic style—a blend of traditional Ethiopian folk sounds with UK garage & house beats—and his latest EP only furthers those sonic experiments.
Zelalem, which means “Eternity” in Amharic, is made up of five songs that sample and reshape the Masenko and Krar instruments used by Ethiopia’s azmaris to create hypnotizing productions that Seifu calls “eternally Ethiopian.”
“Mikael’s music does not westernize or electronicize extant Ethiopian music," Seifu’s label RVNG Intl. adds. "Instead, Seifu uses Ethio-Jazz’s spirit of brewing estranged styles for his own musical tincturing.”
Zelalem, out today via RVNG Intl., is accompanied by a 50-minute cassette mixtape from Seifu that compiles Ethiopian and African folk music. There's no tracklist or much more info out there about the mix, so if you recognize any of the tracks give us a shout.
Stream the Zelalem mixtape below and, if you’re in NYC, head to Mikael Seifu's EP release party tonight (details in the flyer underneath).