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Fortuna Records

An Independent Tel Aviv Imprint Currently Surfing The International Airwaves
 

Currently creating a significant stir on the international airwaves is the Tel Aviv-based Fortuna Records label. With a slew of recent vinyl re-issues promoting vibrant and somewhat forgotten grooves from all over [...]

Currently creating a significant stir on the international airwaves is the Tel Aviv-based Fortuna Records label. With a slew of recent vinyl re-issues promoting vibrant and somewhat forgotten grooves from all over the Middle East, the DJ crew is also deeply ingrained on the local 'party' scene in such highly relevant initiatives as the popular underground Teder.fm 'pop up radio bar'. 

Their claim to fame was the 2014 breakthrough re-issue of the super rare Israeli album by Grazia, a magnificent off-kilter blend if drums, moogs and Turkish vocals by the eponymous 16 year-old artist.

Drawn to psychedelic sounds, from belly-dance to folk, mixed with Turkish rock and 4x4 techno gymnastics, the crew's notorious DJ sets are quite the stunner. Just check out their superb, free download "Belly Dance Disco" mix featured above, their 2013 Boiler Room session featured below (also notice the Boom Pam t-shirt in action) or, if you happen to be in Berlin, stop by their monthly residency at the Panke club in Wedding. 

Most recently we were happy to see The Guardian UK pick up their scent, following Fortuna's 34-minute 'Greek Craze' mix for The Quietus, up on Mixcloud, which label boss Zach Bar described as “a spotlight shone on our favourite Greek tunes. Some of them were recorded by Israeli artists in Jaffa back in the 70s, when Greek music was dominant in the taverns and nightclubs of Israel. Other tracks are from Greece, such as the psychedelic and twisted Tsifteteli, fuelled with breaks and Farfisa madness.” Enjoy!

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This Is Nigeria

Falz Covers Childish Gambino's Iconic Smasher "This Is America"

Following the breathtaking success of Childish Gambino's (aka Donald Glover) cutting-edge mise-en-scène of the American nations deep-seated, paradoxical and hair-raising ailments in the recently released video to "[...]

Following the breathtaking success of Childish Gambino's (aka Donald Glover) cutting-edge mise-en-scène of the American nations deep-seated, paradoxical and hair-raising ailments in the recently released video to "This is America", which is currently at over 270 million views and counting, Nigerian rapper, singer, songwriter and actor Falz The Bahd Guy (aka Folarin Falana) dropped his very own and equally impressive spin-off. 

"This is Nigeria" is Falz's take on the social and socio-economic issues facing his home country, while directly voicing his concerns with daily crime, corruption, lack of security (police stations closing at 6 pm), youth idleness, the media and religious violence. For instance there is also a scene with schoolgirls reminiscent of the Chibok students kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2014. 

A controversy ensued after the video was aired, resulting in threats by the Nigerian MURIC (Muslim Rights Concern), demanding that the "inciting" video "promoting negative stereotypes" be withdrawn and that the artist apologize. Upon which Falz's management issued a statement and many Nigerians took to social media to speak their mind. The MURIC group has meanwhile backed down, claiming it would no longer seek legal action against Falz. 

Watch the video below.

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Unathi / Zaharila

NYC's El Michels Affair Drops New Bollywood-Inspired 45
 

This one definitely caught us off guard because let's just say we weren't expecting Leon Michels to go 'World' on us. Better known under his El Michels Affair moniker, the New York-based artist garnered [...]

This one definitely caught us off guard because let's just say we weren't expecting Leon Michels to go 'World' on us. Better known under his El Michels Affair moniker, the New York-based artist garnered international acclaim for his 2009 Wu-Tang Clan cover project "Enter the 37th Chamber" and its 2017 follow-up "Return to the 37th Chamber". 

Now, the El Michels Affair returns with a new 45 on Big Crown Records that is quite unlike his previous releases. Joining forces with vocalist Piya Malik, one half of the Brooklyn band 79.5, Michels delves into the world of Bollywood Funk. And even though we had trouble grasping the lyrics, we instantly hit repeat: 

"'Unathi' reels the listener in and keeps them through a journey of psychedelic arrangements, unexpected detours, and relentless rhythm. Lyrically, 'Unathi' is a song about progress, a vociferous call to arms urging people to come together and work collectively to achieve it. Gracing the B-side is 'Zaharila', a cinematic, dynamic, and almost visual number as if it were the score to a film that’s never existed. Bent guitar notes and blaring horn stabs ride the peaks and valleys of this epic tale about poisonous whispers that destroy a beautiful love affair." 

The amazing artwork was provided by Chicago-based Deadly Prey Gallery. The original painting was made by Ghanaian artist Mustapha Kemal for the Teshie-based Loversa Video Club, advertizing the 1991 Hindi thriller "Ajooba Kudrat Ka". 

You can listen to "Unathi" in the SoundCloud player above and "Zaharila" in the Visualizer below. Big up to El Michels Affair for this one!

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Huku

RSA Rapper Sho Madjozi Drops Music Video To Blazing New Single

Back to the Republic of South Africa, where early last year up-and-coming Tsonga rapper, writer, poet, style icon and actress Sho Madjozi, aka Maya Wegerif, popped (and locked) into the local music scene, [...]

Back to the Republic of South Africa, where early last year up-and-coming Tsonga rapper, writer, poet, style icon and actress Sho Madjozi, aka Maya Wegerif, popped (and locked) into the local music scene, collaborating with the likes of fellow rapper Okmalumkoolkat and appearing in the popular youth telenovela Mzansi Magic. 

"Dazzling audiences with her audacious lyrics, confidence and bright style," she is on a mission to blend her own musical heritage with a cutting-edge approach to what's happening right now and is definitely one to have on your radar as she plans to release her debut studio album later this year. 

Madjozi's blazing Swahili single "Huku" is the track that caught our attention. Hot on the heals of her 2017 banger "Dumi Hi Phone", it tells the story of a boy who is struggling to reveal his true feelings to her. Below you can watch the brand new accompanying music video directed by Garth von Glehn.

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Colours Of The Night

Maalem Mahmoud Gania’s Final Studio Recordings
 

Hailing from the port city of Essaouira, the late Maalem Mahmoud Gania ranks among the most prolific and highly respected recording musicians in Morocco. A singer and master guimbri player (a three-stringed lute [...]

Hailing from the port city of Essaouira, the late Maalem Mahmoud Gania ranks among the most prolific and highly respected recording musicians in Morocco. A singer and master guimbri player (a three-stringed lute used mainly in traditional Gnawa music), Gania released several albums on various Moroccan labels and collaborated with international artists the likes of Pharoah Sanders (US), Peter Brötzmann (D), James Holden (UK) and Floating Points (UK).

Last year, two years after Gania's passing in 2015, Brighton-based record label Hive Mind Records posthumously released an 8-track album of his final studio recordings. "Colours of the Night" features "deep, hypnotic Gnawa songs" ranging from 8 to 11 minutes in length and marked by Gania's wailing vocals. Trance-like in form, "Gnawa is a musical and spiritual tradition originating in sub-Saharan Africa that has survived as a subculture within Moroccan society for centuries. The roots of the blues can be heard in its hypnotic rhythms." 

Colours of the Night is Gania's first album to receive a vinyl release. You can listen to album opener "Sadati Houma El Bouhala" in the SoundCloud player above or buy/stream the album in full via Bandcamp.

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Le Retour De Toto

Mythical Guadeloupe Group Les Maxel's Returns On Atangana Records
 

It's barely been a month since the new Marseille-based Afro-Disco imprint Atangana Records issued its very first release, a reissue of Haitian singer Fédia Laguerre's phenomenally reworked 1981 single "Divizion". [...]

It's barely been a month since the new Marseille-based Afro-Disco imprint Atangana Records issued its very first release, a reissue of Haitian singer Fédia Laguerre's phenomenally reworked 1981 single "Divizion". Now label head Déni Shain serves up another killer cut, being the long-awaited reissue of a classic track by the mythical Guadeloupe group Les Maxel's.

Remastered and fitted with an equally impressive B-side rework, the 1976 track "Le Retour de Toto" is a flat-out "dancefloor killer" blending zouk, latino music, beguine and calypso flavours just in time for the summer season. "When we discovered this gem with my friend Likkle Ben over a night of digging, it was mainly the keyboard break that drove us nuts ! We were already hearing the edit that we’d make for our gigs," says Déni Shain. 

The Déni Shain and Papastomp remix just premiered on Bolting Bits and you can stream the full track in the SoundCloud player above. The full release will drop on June 8th and can be acquired via Bandcamp. 

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México Mágico Cósmico

Luis Pérez Delves Deep Into Mexican Musical Traditions
 

Fresh off the press at Mr Bongo is this highly recommended reissue of Mexican musical traditions by ways of Luis Pérez. Born in Mexico City in 1951, from 1971 onwards Pérez "dedicated much of his time to the [...]

Fresh off the press at Mr Bongo is this highly recommended reissue of Mexican musical traditions by ways of Luis Pérez. Born in Mexico City in 1951, from 1971 onwards Pérez "dedicated much of his time to the research of the pre-Columbian instrumentation of Mesoamerica. He learned directly from the living sources of the music and collected samples of musical instruments and the songs of different native speakers including Maya, Nahuatl, Mazateco, Yoemem, Comcaac, Raramuri, Wixarika and more"

With a vast personal collection of native Mexican instruments and archaelogical artifacts Pérez keeps the traditions and sounds alive at regular performances, concerts, lectures, etc. 

This specific recording entitled "El Ombligo de la Luna" (The Moon's Navel) delves deep into the magical Mexican cosmos and is quite a other-worldly trip. Buy/stream the release on Bandcamp or hit play in the SoundCloud player above.

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Saigon Supersound

A Selection Of Vietnamese Funk, Soul & Latin From 1965-1975
 

About a year ago, in 2017, we issued a newsletter to our subscribers introducing a special musical project, which remains highly relevant and which we believe needs to be included in our online archive of [...]

About a year ago, in 2017, we issued a newsletter to our subscribers introducing a special musical project, which remains highly relevant and which we believe needs to be included in our online archive of extraordinary finds. Said project is the result of Frankfurt-based DJ, label head and electronic music pioneer Jan Hagenkötter's tireless efforts to put together a selection of tracks representing the so-called "Golden Era" of popular music in South Vietnam, where – under difficult circumstances – a veritable music scene flourished. That is until the large exodus of artists in April 1975, which put an end to the South Vietnamese music industry.

"'Saigon Supersound' is the story of a musical era that was almost lost," reads the first line of the project's liner notes. "This collection focuses on the South, where under 'imported' western influence a new kind of pop and rock music had developed. [...] The remaining bits and pieces were seen as 'decadent' by the communists, were disgraced and maginalized and ultimately disappeared from everyday life. Records surviving from this era are often in a sad and pitiful state, heavily scratched and full of dust so deeply engrained in the grooves as to render them virtually unplayable. [...] Nevertheless, the songs persist. Particularly among the many Vietnamese who fled their homeland these songs became classics or even hymns that were re-recorded again and again in the diaspora."

During a one-year stay in Ho-Chi-Minh City in 2011/12 and with the help of friends Jan Hagenkötter eventually proceeded to research and collect this pre-war era music, buying vinyl singles from around the world in an attempt to restore one good recording from several sources or sometimes recording directly from original reel to reel tapes, and finally put together this amazing compilation of South Vietnamese productions that clearly reveal elements from western popular music and imported styles, i.e. latin, rock or soul. Music, that "in all its simplicity, speaks directly to the hearts and souls of people". You can buy/stream the Saigon Supersound compilation from the INFRAcom! Bandcamp page, check the official trailer or just tune in via the YouTube playlist of all 18 tracks below. Also, click the SoundCloud player above for an exclusive Supersound blues mix by Jan Hagenkötter himself.

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Fenfo

Malian Singer Fatoumata Diawara Set To Release 2nd Solo Album

It's been seven years since the acclaimed Malian chanteuse Fatoumata Diawara put forth her mesmerising debut solo project "Fatou". This Friday, she releases her much anticipated follow-up "Fenfo" (Something To Say), [...]

It's been seven years since the acclaimed Malian chanteuse Fatoumata Diawara put forth her mesmerising debut solo project "Fatou". This Friday, she releases her much anticipated follow-up "Fenfo" (Something To Say), including 11 new tracks, co-produced by Diawara herself alongside singer/songwriter/guitarist Matthieu Chedid, alias –M–, a superstar in his native France, who recently won the "Best World Music Album" award at the French Grammys for his "Lamomali" project, which also featured Fatoumata. 

Internationally recognised "as one of the most beautiful voices of modern African music", Fatoumata Diawara has collaborated with the the likes of Damon Albarn, Amadou and Mariam, Bobby Womack, Herbie Hancock and Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca in the past years and now returns, blending Wassoulou and other traditional Malian genres with elements of funk-rock, soul, blues, afropop and afrobeat elements to underline her messages on "Fenfo". "Above all, her goal is to inspire young Malians, and young people everywhere, to take matters into their own hands." (via Afropop)

Earlier this week, UK dance duo Disclosure sampled Fatoumata Diawara on their newest track "Ultimatum", which you can stream here. Below you can feast your eyes and ears on the stunning video to Diawara's swinging lead single "Nterini", created by Ethiopian photographer and artist Aïda Muluneh. "The video was shot in the Danakil Desert in Ethiopia. Aïda Muluneh was inspired by Afro-futuristic aesthetics, as well as visual elements borrowed from the Dogons, a Malian ethnic group." (via PAM). But before you do, feel free to watch the trailer to "Nterini" here. For a detailed list of tour dates and a show in a city near you, check her website

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Naino

Barcelona's Adarce Records Digs Deep Into Spanish Grooves From 1974-1984

Barcelona-based imprint Adarce Records has been putting out some great music lately, which definitely warrants a short introduction on Greedy. Specialising in "Spanish grooves, including reissues of funk, disco, [...]

Barcelona-based imprint Adarce Records has been putting out some great music lately, which definitely warrants a short introduction on Greedy. Specialising in "Spanish grooves, including reissues of funk, disco, rumba, bossa nova and library records from the 60s & 70s", Adarce has been dropping a host of impressive records and compilations to the benefit of diggers and music lovers all across the globe. 

Released at the tail-end of 2017, their fantastic 14-track compilation of Spanish gypsy soul funk and disco definitely made a lasting impression on us. "Naino!" is dedicated to "the fusion of black music and gypsy music" created in Spain between 1974 and 1984 and focusses "on a breakthrough movement that was started by 'rumberos' and 'flamencos' by mixing soul, funk and disco" that enabled "musicians to explore new sounds and discover links between these two well-known musical traditions".

You can listen to the entire compilation in the YouTube playlist below. For reference we've included a detailed tracklist below. Enjoy!

1) Marian Conde - Tómame que tómame
2) Juan Bautista - Naino naino
3) Los Maravilla - Ven ven vente
4) Dolores Vargas - Déjalo
5) Paca y Manuela - Dímelo
6) Chele - Libre como el viento
7) Lola Flores - Cómo me las maravillaría yo
8) Perlita de Huelva - Mi almohada
9) Morena y clara - Para vivir así
10) Trigal - Vente conmigo
11) Las Deblas - Zorongo
12) Rumba tres - Buscaremos un rincón
13) Tobago - Toquiliquitón
14) Chipén - Volao

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Eastern Soul

Fortuna Records Issue Four-Track 12" By Yemenite Jazz Legend Tsvia Abarbanel

Back in 2012 Tel Aviv's prolific Fortuna Records imprint released its first 7" record. Yemenite jazz legend Tsvia Abarbanel's "Soul Of The East" EP featured two tracks and has been highly sought-after ever [...]

Back in 2012 Tel Aviv's prolific Fortuna Records imprint released its first 7" record. Yemenite jazz legend Tsvia Abarbanel's "Soul Of The East" EP featured two tracks and has been highly sought-after ever since. 

After digging up another one of Abarbanel's tracks that was included on their 2017 compilation of obscure Yemenite-Israeli funk, Fortuna Records now released a much anticipated EP entitled "Eastern Soul" with four super rare tracks by Tsvia Abarbanel.

"Privately pressed by Tsvia in 1970, this was the first-ever attempt at combining traditional Yemenite compositions with funk and spiritual jazz." You can stream the entire release in the SoundCloud player above and/or buy the EP via Bandcamp. Rest assured, this is a special one!

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Mawu

Argentina's Muno Releases Entrancing Debut EP Of Tribal Slowhouse
 

It's summertime here in the Western hemisphere and so at times, life slows down as we spend more and more time back in the outdoors, cherishing those moments in the sun, taking in life's treats to the fullest. Call [...]

It's summertime here in the Western hemisphere and so at times, life slows down as we spend more and more time back in the outdoors, cherishing those moments in the sun, taking in life's treats to the fullest. Call it a perfect fit for the downtempo experimental electronics that rising Argentinian producer Muno has been dropping. 

Deemed slowhouse with an ethic, tribal touch, Muno just released his debut EP "Mawu" on São Paulo's Tropical Twista Records and it is absolutely entrancing: "Mawu is related to fertility, motherhood, kindness, forgiveness, rest and joy. It's the feminine half of the creator god Mawu-Lisa. It is associated with aspects of the world related to the earth, the west, the moon and the night," reads the description, as Muno effortlessly creates "a collage of ancient rhythms blended with fine modern electronica"

There is a rare musical magic to be found in these cutting edge concoctions, flashing archaic colours in surprisingly familiar fashion. You can download the entire four-track EP on a 'name your price' basis from Bandcamp or stream it in the SoundCloud player above.  Also, visit Muno's SoundCloud page for more of his production work.

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Goy Boyro

Mali’s Samba Touré Drops Poignant Music Video Off New Album

"We have our own blues band. It isn't bad; it only sounds that way," reads the opening line in Malian singer and guitarist Samba Touré's brand new music video to "Goy Boyro", the opening track off his forthcoming [...]

"We have our own blues band. It isn't bad; it only sounds that way," reads the opening line in Malian singer and guitarist Samba Touré's brand new music video to "Goy Boyro", the opening track off his forthcoming third longplayer on Glitterbeat Records. And indeed, the first sounds that hit you are not what you might expect: 

“It’s contemporary music from Mali,” Touré insists. “Maybe our traditional music has changed. We live all in the same world wherever we are on that planet, we all have the same music on radio or TV, we hear the same music in movies, so even if we don’t really know what’s rock music in Mali, we hear some everywhere every day, it has become part of our inspirations, easy inspirations because it’s sometimes so close to what we do traditionally. If you attend a traditional ceremonies in villages north of Mali, you’ll see that musician always use distortion at maximum level but they don’t know anything about rock or blues. But believe me they do some. And desert blues…to me it’s a way to name music from the region north Mali, Niger or Mauritania but it has no more sense.” 

What's even more remarkable is the companion music video to "Goy Boyro", which poignantly showcases "the spirit connection between West Africa and Afro-American culture as well as the scourge of racism," as we revel in the music. Watch the full video below. Samba Touré's new album "Wande" (The Beloved) releases May 25th. 

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