News Brief

Vic Mensa Taps Afrobeats & Dancehall in His New Single, 'Metaphysical'

Finally.

Victor Kwesi Mensah. What took you so long?

Yes, Vic Mensa just dropped his new single, "Metaphysical," which fuses afrobeats and dancehall in a smooth croon for an unexplainable feeling a woman is giving him. This is sound is definitely different for the Chicago rapper, but it works.


His raspy singing voice drops hints of patois and pidgin as he continues to shoot his shot in the song.

The artwork for the single also let's us know that he's diving head first into this sound, as it pays homage to Fela Kuti's album art for "Expensive Shit" by Nigerian artist Lemi Ghariokwu (read more about the stories behind his legendary work here).

Artwork via Twitter.


This single is in a great place to hit up Afrobeats finest for a remix. Chale, we're expecting Burna Boy on this track next time we hear it—or Odunsi the Engine, Mr Eazi, Efya or Santi, even (you're welcome).

Listen to "Metaphysical" on Spotify (and Youtube) below.

Music

The Sounds of Somali Supergroup 4 Mars

A seminal anthology of 4 Mars, a 40-member Somali supergroup formed in 1977, is coming out via Ostinato Records.

In 2019, Ostinato Records became the first label granted access to the grand Archives of Radiodiffusion-Télévision de Djibouti (RTD), a vault of secrets and stories from East Africa. Below, Ostinato Records founder Vik Sohonie writes about their new release, Djibouti Archives Vol. 1: Super Somali Sounds from the Gulf of Tadjoura.

In 1977, on the eve of independence of the Republic of Djibouti, a small country on the Red Sea in East Africa, a densely packed archive was pieced together in a quiet corner of the national radio. Over the years, it became a premier but largely unknown African archive housing thousands of master reels and cassettes of the finest East African sounds.

It has endured fires and theft of invaluable recordings. Those scars linger on the delicate films of quarter-inch reels and cassette tapes. It remains one of the most expansive, well-maintained archives in Africa—but also one of the most restrictive. For decades, the archive remained off-limits to foreign entities of any kind.

In 2019, after negotiations spanning many years, Ostinato Records became the first label granted access to the grand Archives of Radiodiffusion-Télévision de Djibouti (RTD), a vault of secrets and stories—from East Africa, Somalia, Ethiopia, and of course Djibouti itself.

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21 Amapiano Songs By Artists From Outside South Africa To Stream Right Now

21 amapiano songs from Nigeria, the UK, Mozambique, Namibia, Kenya and Tanzania to stream right now.

By now, it's an open secret that amapiano is being produced outside of South Africa where it originates. Nigerian producers and artists, mostly, have embraced the sound and are creating and releasing their own interpretations of amapiano and amapiano-inspired songs.

The songs have resulted in cross-cultural sounds and collaborations that, in their own way, serve to unite, celebrate and foster an exchange of the electrifying music scenes that exist throughout the continent. As a result, these fusions have seen a number people casually refer to them as "Afropiano, Afro-amapiano etc" or "gengepiano" (gengetone with amapiano).

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(Photo by: Universal History Archive/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

President Joe Biden Ends Trump's Muslim Travel Ban

President Joe Biden has done away with the 2017 Muslim travel ban enforced by the former Trump administration. The travel ban included several African and Middle Eastern countries.

Just hours after having been sworn in as the 46th President of the US alongside Vice President, Kamala Harris, President Joe Biden reportedly signed 17 executive orders including doing away with the infamous Muslim travel ban. The ban, which was enforced under the former Trump administration in 2017, targeted predominately Muslim countries in the Middle East but also included several African countries such as Nigeria, Chad, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania and Eritrea.
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