Watch a music video for Spoek Mathambo's cover of the Joy Division song "Control," from director Pieter Hugo and DP Michael Cleary.
Spoek Mathambo is the latest of the new afrofuturists from South Africa. Covering Joy Division's classic "She's Lost Control" (also covered by Jamaican-born afrofuturist predecessor Grace Jones shortly after its release), Spoek applies the Sankofa principle by learning from the teachings of the past to go forward to get across his idea of a scary not too distant future. Director Pieter Hugo and DP Michael Cleary's stark black & white images shot in South Africa are the perfect company to Joy Division frontman Ian Curtis' bleak lyrics. Fire, water torture, ritualistic township zombie children and Spoek's clean white suit are just part of a wicked show heaped on the viewer, shown in quickly edited staccato images. This video is one to come back to again and again for meaning, and Spoek's bassy-hard Afro Tech House take on the track adds to an effective punishing assault on the senses.