Surf's Up

19/07/2019Radio Martiko's Latest 7" Takes Us To The Shores Of Java & Casablanca

This summer, Ghent-based Belgian record label, soundsystem and digging collective Radio Martiko returns with a host of highly collectible 7” reissues that will make like-minded seekers of “global eclectic supersounds” go, oh yeah!

Our favourite release of the batch is a green 45rpm gem containing two rare stunners, one from the Indonesian island of Java and one from Morocco’s Casablanca. Both tracks were dug up by Radio Martiko’s Fred Kramer, who shares his story on the Bandcamp release page.

Side A brings us the intoxicating, dream-like instrumental track “Es Lilin” (Ice Lolly) recorded in 1965 by Dutch-Indo ballroom band The Evergreens. Based on “a Sudanese (West Java) folksong (daerah) [and] composed on an ancient Gamelan scale” with laid-back guitar riffs we were amazed by this original love song’s distinct Ethio Jazz feel.

Side B unexpectedly serves up another fascinating find, recorded in 1962 by obscure Jewish-Moroccan formation Les Jaguar's de Casablanca, led by drummer/percussionist extraordinaire Jauk Armal, aka “the Okay Temiz from Casablanca”. A cover of British pop icons the Shadows, “Gonzales” reeled us in with its striking surf rock vibe and raw garage sound.

Do take a moment to read Fred Kamer’s words on “Java Surf” and make sure you add this to your collection. Once again, a big shout out to Radio Martiko on this superb release. Surf’s up!

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom