23/03/2023French Duo Ireke Explores All Grooves Tropical On Exuberant Debut Full-Length

Spring has sprung in the Northern Hemisphere and that solar energy we've been missing for the past months is slowly making its return. Accompanying the equinox is the debut album by French duo Ireke. Having honed their individual talents in various roles and outfits, the two multi-instrumentalists and arrangers Damien Tesson and Julien Gervaix first crossed paths in a group called Playtime and eventually decided to join forces to explore common ground: "We wanted to go deeper exploring the sounds emanating from the Caribbean," they describe their potent synergy. 

The result of this shared passion for afrobeat, highlife and all grooves tropical is their radiant ten-tracker on multi-genre Paris-based imprint Underdog Records (The Bongo Hop, João Selva, Dowdelin) consequently titled "Tropikadelic" and bringing together all sorts of intoxicating sweetness. Coincidentally, Ireke happens to mean 'sugar cane' in Yoruba, which seems about right. Joining them on their deep dive into "tropical climes" are a host of high-calibre guest artists the likes of "groove griot Pat Kalla, the Franco-Laotian reggaeman Amatah Keo, the Vendée- based Agnès Hélène and Charly Sanga, the Burkinabè lion Sana Bob as well as the Nantes soulman Jy Cool".

"Tropikadelic" is an invitation to dance, look on the bright side of life and leave your worries behind. Conjuring sunny styles like a voodoo priestess, Ireke rejoice in exuberant rhythms and vibrant musicality to buoyant effect, poised to eliminate any lingering winter woes. Stream the full album and watch the official video to "Petit à Petit" featuring Agnès Hélène below.

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom