The Merkolator

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Jack is building a new council estate House in East London.

01 Kowton – Stasis
02 Boddika & Joy Orbison – Tricky’s Team
03 Daphni & Owen Pallett – Julia
04 Fish – Merk U
05 Joonipah – Gut Feeling
06 Boddika – Soul What (Rmx)
07 Artifact – Exist
08 X5 Dubz – Shapes
09 Boodika & Joy Orbison – Swims
10 Indigo – Aradia
11 Nativ – Breathe
12 Wen – Swingin’ (LDN mix)
13 Detboi – Focus
14 Charlux – Unmarked Patrol
15 Volac – My Crew
16 Volac – Hips Don’t Lie (Sammy W & Alex E Rmx)
17 Emeskay – Searchin (Zoltan Kontes Rmx)
18 2ndcity – I’ll Tell You
19 Ko Kane – Rockin’ With The Best
20 Ill Phil & Lorenzo – Jump Around
21 Ill Phil & Lorenzo feat. MC Sim – It’s Getting Hectic
22 Majestic – Lets Go Back (Cause N Affect Mix)
23 Lockhart – Get Down (Busta)
24 Flava D – In The Dance
25 Formula – Hoods & Bass
26 Jook 10 – Strike
27 Icicle – Final Master
28 Dj Deeon – Titties And Ass
29 Sky Cell – Foam Feathers

NGOMA MIX 13 – Juju-Juke

Ever since drums were banned on most slave plantations in N. America during the 1600s, after the masters discovering that the slaves organized revolts with their talking drums, the expression of poly-rhythms in N. American popular music has primarily been through use of the voice.  This is the reason music in the US is typified by the simple 1-2 “dupple” rhythm, in contrast to more complex beat patterns in South-America or the Caribbean (which kept their drums).  Thus the evolution of all subsequent Afro-North-American music was profoundly shaped, from Blues to Funk to Disco:  kick on the 1, and snare on the 2; all the way down to the late 20th Century – complex poly-rhythms in hiphop is produced with rap, and the drums remain a skeletal, minimalistic boom-bap, as if just to mark time.

Now in the 21st Century a renewed sense of rhythmic complexity returns to  Afro-North-American dance music in the form of Juke/Footwork in Chicago: interlocking 2s and 3s form intricate beat structures, unmistakeably related to many forms of percussion styles in the motherland (but still often keeping that N. American hard snare on the 2).

OR: STREAM: MIXCLOUD //// DOWNLOAD: SEPARATE TRACKS OR SINGLE TRACK

This NGOMA volume demonstrates this reconnection, after centuries of separation, between African tradition and Afro-Diaspora:  between Nigerian Juju/Fuji music and Chicago Juke/Footwork, between Ethiopian dance styles and Detroit Ghetto-Tech, between Iberian trad-modern street sounds and American R’n’B/Pop, between Afro-Punk and Club Music, between Congolese Mbira workouts and Hiphop, between Ghanaian and Senegalese drumming and Urban Bass Pressure.   Let us pump up the volume and remember the power and spirit of rhythm which survives every hardship, cruelty, and oppression, and rejoice in the timeless Music Of the Drums.

big thanks to Keith Jones for knowledge passing, Itzi Nallah, Sonic Diaspora and states side massive for making the Juju-Juke tour possible, my B-girls Jessi and Maya for support.Juju-Juke Tour kick off in Belgrade

I have played this set a few times now during the Serbia, Germany, and US East Coast tour  a few weeks ago, and crowds have gone completely BONKERS as the energy went straight through the roof: 500 screaming people and massive MOSH PIT at 3AM during Mikser Festival Belgrade; club crowd which refused to leave, clapping and hollering for 20 minutes after lights went up and sound was turned off at The Shrine Chicago.  I guess the world is more than ready for 160 BPM Afro-Footwork pressure!!!

and here is that adrenaline fueled misanthropic juke edit of South African punk rockers Koos by itself (download and drop into your set if you are wo/man enough :D):

NGOMA 11 – Northern Tropikal

Rhythms born of the tropics grow up in colder urban climates:  A re-newed attention to percussion is appearing on the many different shores of Northern Hemisphere electronic dance music; as a new generation of artists in the US and Europe channel, re-interpret, and recontextualize Afro-diasporic drumming traditions according to their own local sensibilities, reaching to complete the mother continents’ circle of musical influence.

OR: STREAM: MIXCLOUD //// DL: SEPARATE TRACKS OR SINGLE TRACK

In Detroit and Chicago intricate percussive patterns are growing right between the rigid 4-on-the-floor, snare-on-the-2 beat. Evolving directly from street level forms such as Ghetto-Tech and Booty-House, new drum sounds integrate with the cold and hard latices of industrialized assembly line structure – among others, the exceptional track by The Grizzl and J. Phlip is a perfect example.  interlocking microscopic beat segments by Afrikanized robot drummers are revitalizing increasingly impoverished styles like Hip Hop and Techno, machines under duress reaching new states of intensity.   Juke may be a freak mutation, a strange autistic grand child of Afrikan music with a mechanical brain and artificial limbs, and is itself giving birth to new hybrid styles both at home in the US and abroad (many of the tracks here fall in this one-step-removed category of Juke-inspired music).  Addison Groove brings streamlined house tempo footwork; while Chicago artists like Wheez-ie and Brenmar from the Movelt Posse come with their Juke inflected club music sometimes more informed by Afrikan urban music than anything from America – one listen to 28 – Bak it In or 16 – So High will convince you.

In Europe, the UK-Funky movement is in full swing, with its obviously Afro-Caribbean derived beat propelling the dance forward, represented here by mainstays  Roska and Doc Daneeka.  in Germany artists like Mode Selector, Dark Sky, and Schlachthofbronx are formulating their own Afro-Teutonic sonic worlds, sometimes reflecting the cold and sun-deprived climate of their homeland.   There are also micro strands of European producers making direct interpretations of Afrikan styles such as Angolan Kuduro, exemplified here by Diamond Bass and Portuguese artist Roulet.  Besides proponents working within genre delineations, there are many exploring unclassifiable areas between them.  For example UKG legends Bias and Gurley’s “Roll” remixed by Blackdown is a frankenstein monster borne of Garage and Juke, Sampology with the epic and all encompassing “Transatlantic Skanking Dub”, and Gremino and Baobinga & I.D.’s hard edged mutant Afro-Bass.

Northern Tropikal is either the lastest chapter of the continuing story of the original Afrikan pulse spreading, pollinating, multiplying, or “western” urban nomads accessing deep memories of Motherland rhythm heritage within the harsh reality of concrete jungles.  Which ever perspective you choose, one thing is clear:  Afrikanized Killer Beats are on the swarm.

01 Intro Feat. The Ill Saint
02 Bias & Gurley – Roll (Blackdown’s A Debt Repaid Remix)
03 Photek – U.F.O. (Addison Groove remix)
04 Addison Groove – Make Um Bounce
05 Dark Sky – The Lick
06 The Grizzl And J. Phlip – Bakupgrl
07 Modeselector – Art & Cash (Roska Remix)
08 Wireless Sound – Chicago
09 Lars Moston & Philipe de Boyar – So Sick (Douster Remix)
10 Randomer & Fife – No Sleep
11 Headhunter – Locus Lotus
12 Roska & Untold – Long Range
13 Diamond Bass – Stereotype
14 BD1982 – Calenture (Pacheko Remix)
15 Brenmar – At It Again
16 Brenmar – So High
17 AC Slater & Mumdance – Transatlantic Riddim (Instrumental)
18 Sampology – Transatlantic Skanking Dub
19 Doc Daneeka – Drums In the Deep
20 Pariah – The Slump + XXXY – Constant
21 Same Tiba – Barbie Weed + Onyenze – Onwa Nna Na Nwa – (Schlachthofbronx Remix)
22 Brenmar – Like It Like That
23 Dillon Francis – Westside
24 Onyenze – Onwa Nna Na Nwa – (Schlachthofbronx Remix)
25 Gremino – Ruffness
26 Baobinga & I.D. – Tongue Riddim
27 Addison Groove – This Is It + Berou & Canblaster – Kapongo Dance
28 Wheez-ie – Bak It In
29 Rusko – Cockney Thug (Buraka Som Sistema Remix) + Dj Assault – Ass ‘n’ titties
30 Buckfunk 3000 and Si Begg – High Volume (VIP Mix)
31 Makongo – Angolan Kung Fu (Dubbel Dutch Remix) + Dj Godfather I Keep Bangin The Beat
32 Roulet – Oasis
33 Scuba – Ruptured (Surgeon remix)
34 30Hz Mutate(d) (Pinch Re-work) / Outro Feat. The Ill Saint

NGOMA MIX 7 – Hard Ass

Not sure what Kuduro means in the Kimbundu language of northern Angola, but its colorful translation in Portuguese is in some ways fitting of the music in both form and theme. Still, even though a lot of the music is hard, and a lot of the songs about fucking, the phrase is very much limited in describing the rich layers of word and sound, and becomes reductionist if taken only at face value. Kuduro can also be playful, humorous, soulful, emotional, ominous, scary, joyful, celebratory, and uplifting. It is also sonically adventurous in radical ways, fearless in its pushing and often destruction of dance music’s aesthetic boundaries, in ways often more bold and creative than sound-design obsessed electronic music from North America or Europe: from sweet accordions to reckless synths, from 8-bit game console palettes to near industrial noise, from samples distorted way beyond recognition to some of the deepest basslines in the world. And the vocals are just as wildly diverse: from “normal” singing to what sounds like children rapping to animalistic growling, grunting, yelling.

OR: STREAM: MIXCLOUD //// DOWNLOAD: MEDIAFIRE

The many different flavors of Kuduro come from both its roots as well as later influence: mainly evolving from Batida rhythms (itself a fusion of African, Brazilian, and Caribbean traditions) of the 1980s, Kuduro has since branched out to sometimes incorporate elements from many other styles including Cape Verdean Funaná, Coupé-Décalé from France and the Ivory Coast, Afro-Brazilian percussion, Western Hiphop and Techno. A concise example of this melting of tradition, current club culture, and sonic experimentation might be track 28: Batida – Tribalismo Com Sacerdote, in which what sounds like distorted Mbiras (thumb piano) coexist with Angolan rap, furious rave energy and absolutely mental synth lines which verge on noise.

And speaking of Western Hiphop and Techno, this mix adopts quite a few Detroit Ghetto-Tech and Chicago Juke samples, to draw parallels between inner-city Afro-diaspora underground and African urban sound. Because, at least from where i’m standing, the Parallels are many: relentless and insistent focus on rhythm; use of repetition past the point of monotony in becoming pure abstraction; fast tempo and intensity pushing the dancefloor near breaking-point; gritty, raw, and unpolished sound; and finally, ruthless libidinal energy which defies any attempts at restraint.

Also, besides a few entirely unexpected and thrilling use of cultural pastiche in the songs themselves, there are 2 of my mashups here: track 16 which incorporates Indonesian Jaipong drums and track 35 which transforms the orchestral version of an old rave number we all know. Mostly consisting of both older and newer Kuduro from Angola, this mix also includes a few songs from Tanzania, Cote d’Ivoire, Cape Verde, and Brazil. I tried to avoid Western interpretations of Kuduro altogether, but 3 tunes feature non-African collaborating producers or remixers: their inclusion is testament of the strength of these tracks.

01 Dj Znobia – Ta Pio
02 DJ Ramatoulaye – Alhaji (Aladin Mix)
03 Helder, Rei do Kuduro – Felicidade
04 Unknown – Unknown (Helder Junior) (samples Dj Godfather)
05 King Wendu – Unknown
06 Directamente da Banda – Baza Baza
07 Project Winter – Progressividade
08 Dj Nedwyt Fox – Agora Nukutusula
09 Dj Clintonn – C Du Chahut
10 Dj Znobia – Kuduro em Musica
11 Dj Joca Moreno – Jogo de Cintura (samples Coon Daddy)
12 Dama S & Puto Stro – Pedrada Forte
13 Apanha Tudo – Bomban
14 Dj Jesus – Humbe, Humbe
15 Dj João Reis – N.B.A. – Instrumental (samples Dj Spinn & Dj Rashad)
16 Master of Jaipong VS. DJ Amorim – Drum and Bass
17 Dj kito – Da Cara (samples Dj Rashad)
18 Zakee Kuduro & Buraka Som Sistema – New Africa (samples Dj Rashad)
19 Tinox – Sans Gueber
20 Dj Amorim – In The Rush Hour
21 Nervoso – House Diney (interlude samples Dj Assault and Ol’ Dirty Bastard)
22 Dj Djeff feat Maskarado – Elegom Bounsa VS. Dj V.R. – Batida Tchapu
23 Dj Jesus – Crazy Love
24 Dj Znobia – Eue
25 Lucky Gomes – Patiri
26 Puto Cossa – Vem Live feat. Dj Nedwyt Fox
27 Dj V.R. – Batida Tchapu (reprise) / Dama Pancha – Zum zum zum
28 Batida – Tribalismo Com Sacerdote
29 Dj miki – Dmc Caps Mix 2 (samples Kill Frenzy)
30 Katinga MC – Alegoria remix (samples A Lost People)
31 Dj Amorim – Os Angolanos
32 Figura – Ze Bula (Sabbo Remix)
33 Dj Ivan LLuv – Let’s Go
34 Unknown – Unknown (Follow Me)
35 Dj Kadu – Catelita VS. KLF and The Williams Fairey Brass Band – What Time Is Love
36 Ize’ feat. Anofela – Cape Decale
37 Schlachthofbronx – Farafina feat. Ete Kelly
38 Ize’ – Nhaku d’home
39 Unknown – Unknown (outro)