Ennanga Vision

Jesse Hackett & Albert Ssempeke Deconstruct Traditional Ugandan Music
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Earlier this month, UK-based independent record label Soundway Records, home to a multitude of styles by acclaimed acts such as Ondatrópica, Lord Echo, Ibibio Sound Machine and many more, released the latest project by London producer Jesse Hackett, whom you may remember from the Kenyan-/Luo-influenced Owiny Sigoma band. Alias Ennanga Vision, Hackett's latest musical venture takes him into the heart of Uganda (or rather Buganda), where he joins forces with [...]

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Sembene!

A Prize-Winning Documentary On The ''Father Of African Cinema"
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Just ahead of yet another week's end, we would like to recommend this brilliant 90-minute documentary film to broaden your cinematic horizon. Thanks to Daniel Haaksman for tipping us off!

"Some say we are made of flesh and blood. I believe we are made of stories", goes the opening line of the official trailer to "SEMBENE!", a 2015-released, prize-winning documentary about the masterful Senegalese director, producer and writer Ousmane Sembene: "SEMBENE! [...]

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Modern Choro

Brazilian Mandolin Phenom Danilo Brito Plays NPR's Tiny Desk At Lightning Speed
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Hailing from São Paulo, 32-year-old Brazilian mandolin soloist and composer Danilo Brito is best known for his dextrous and virtuosic choro renditions, a popular Brazilian instrumental music genre said to have originated in 19th century Rio de Janeiro's streets and back yards. Choro (meaning 'cry' or 'lament' in Portuguese), despite its name, is usually marked by a fast-paced rhythm, a style that was an invaluable source of inspiration to many Brazilian [...]

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Azulejos

Italian Producer Populous Releases Mindboggling New LP On Wonderwheel Recordings
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This is the first we've heard of Andrea Mangia, alias Populous, a gifted producer hailing from the small Italian city of Lecce, aka Italy's Jamaica. Which of course goes on to explain his reggae and hip hop tinged upbringing. Populous has been releasing music since his debut album "Quipo" (Morr Music) back in 2003 and steadily began making a name for himself on the global circuit. Drawing on a wide range of analogue influences, which he blends with digital [...]

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Golden Day

Amsterdam's Turkish psych-folk combo Altın Gün take on Orhan Gencebay's "Goca Dünya"
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There are some tunes that are instant classics. Take 1960s track "Goca Dünya" (Giant World) by Turkish icon Orhan Gencebay for instance, covered by Erkin Koray in 1972 and now rearranged by Amsterdam-based Turkish psych-folk formation Altın Gün (Golden Day) to make the A-Side on the second instalment of Swiss Bongo Joe Records imprint's brand new 7" vinyl series.

After performing in Istanbul alongside Jacco Gardner, bassist Jasper Verhulst discovered his [...]

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Madjafalao

Benin's Tout-Puissant Orchestre Poly-Rythmo Brings Its Extensive Body Of Work To Europe
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50 years are no joke, that's like half a century or something and that's exactly how long Benin's almighty Orchestre Poly-Rythmo De Cotonou has speerheaded the worldwide afrobeat movement. Ironically enough, even though this potent polyrhythmic ensemble has played with Africa's biggest stars, including Fela Kuti, Manu Dibango or Miriam Makeba, they never performed abroad up until 2007. Thanks to a vibrant and flourishing world music scene and labels such as [...]

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Origami

Jaska Lukkarinen Trio: Putting Finnish Jazz On The Map For Good
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Finnish jazz? Why yes, that too is a possibility. Well, let's say we expected as much, ever since Finnish jazz sextett Dalindèo appeared on the scene back in 2003 or filmmaker Aki Kaurismäki introduced us to Finnish tango. It should not come as a surprise then that Finnland today has a budding jazz scene with a handful of key players, such as drummer Jaska Lukkarinen and Berlin/Helsinki-based composer Valtteri Laurell Pöyhönen. Pöyhönen is known as the [...]

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Oy, Jew Are Not Alone!

Michael Croland Takes A Closer Look At Yiddish Culture & Punk Music
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As our Jewish Monkeys continue their pursuit of fame across Germany, performing live in Hanover tonight and in Hamburg tomorrow (check our Shows page here), we decided to reference a recent article by Michael Croland for young Jewish online magazine Jewcy, fittingly entitled "Mosh Your Tuches Off!". The pop culturally highly relevant piece embarks on a short exploration of current Yiddish punk performers or punk bands incorporating Yiddish elements, "Oy" or [...]

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Afro Golden Line

Amir Bresler To Drop A Hot New 2-Track 7" On Raw Tapes
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Tel Aviv-/Berlin-based tastemakers Raw Tapes return with a forthcoming digital/seven-inch vinyl release by Israeli drummer Amir Bresler, one of the most sought after percussionists on the block. Bresler, who was first exposed to the wonders of jazz music at age 15, today performs with some of the best jazz musicians in Israel as well as on prominent international stages around the globe. 

Some time ago, Bresler was approached by Meinl cymbals and asked to [...]

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Tour Be Or Not Tour Be?

BREAKING: The Jewish Monkeys Kick Off A New String Of Live Shows In Switzerland & Germany
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The infamous Jewish Monkeys have arrived in Germany, again! Well actually they have touched ground in Switzerland, where tonight they kick off a string of eight live shows, to present their brand new longplayer "High Words" and shake some Teutonic limbs. "High Words" is now available to stream and download via Bandcamp, right over here, and comprises 10 newish tracks, including the recently released "Pupik", a tale of love in the age of social media. This [...]

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Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra

Berlin's Ensemble Extraordinaire Shares 11-Minute Track Off Their Forthcoming LP
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Established back in 2006, the 20-something-piece Berlin-based Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra (AMEO) is definitely a musical force to be reckoned with. Unlike your average large ensemble, AMEO has created a whole new and genre-bending musical language that quite literally "dwarfs anything heretofore experienced" (Neue Zürcher Zeitung). With a penchant for experimentation this group of self-organized, like-minded and in-demand musicians, hailing from various [...]

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Safar

Music from Afghanistan
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Afghanistan suffered immensely under the Taliban regime and subsequent insurgencies, which took their toll on the country's rich cultural diversity and musical traditions. Music was forbidden under Taliban rule, but survived at the hands of master musicians, who continue to pass along their invaluable knowledge to younger generations.

One such project is "Safar" (meaning journey) that marks a continued musical exchange between the University of Music FRANZ [...]

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