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Something a Little Different: Kasai Allstars

“In the 7th moon, the chief turned into a swimming fish and ate the head of his enemy by magic”

Believe it or not, the opening line of this post is actually the title of Kasai Allstars’ debut album, described as featuring ‘some of the wildest and most unusual sounds on the planet‘.

Kasai Allstars are a collective of Congolese musicians, bringing together disparate sounds from the five ethnic groups, or “tribes”, of the Kasai region. You can listen to their album here (if you have Spotify) or alternatively, head to your online music retailer of choice as it’s well worth getting hold of a copy.

As you may have guessed from the regularity of my posting here, I’m not currently interested in writing big long articles so I’m trying a new approach to this blog. Listening to music is all about interpretation, and for those interested in exploring these sounds more deeply, there are far more authoritative and interesting people out there.

So, from me, it’s time for something a little different… Check back for more soon.


David Byrne on Musical Architecture

Here’s an interesting TED lecture given by David Byrne about how the architecture of performance spaces helped develop different musical styles.

Byrne takes a number of physical contexts and looks at how they have shaped everything from traditional West African music to jazz and stadium rock. Watch it here

Plus, listen out for his amusing habit of saying “so I asked myself” (well, how did I get here?).

Africa Brasil Mix

This may be my first post since July (?!), but bear with me because the first VariousNoises mixtape is finally finished and available to listen and download!

Inspired by Jorge Ben’s classic album Africa Brasil, this is a mix all about the shared rhythm, energy and soul of funk influenced music coming from both sides of the Atlantic in the 1970s as well as the legacy of artists such as Jorge and Fela Kuti.

I’ll hopefully get some more mixtapes up on the new VariousNoises Mixcloud page in the not too distant future so make sure you check back soon, I’ve also put this one on SoundCloud so you can listen without even leaving the blog.

Africa/Brasil mix by VariousNoises

Hope you enjoy it, there’s plenty more from the featured artists to check out on Spotify, iTunes, YouTube etc. Unfortunately I couldn’t find room for a Fela track (songs clocking in at 10 minutes plus aren’t great in a mix) so here’s the excellent ‘Colonial Mentality’ to make do with for now.

Head over to the Downloads page for more free mp3s.

Image credit: JAIRO BD on Flickr