After the release of their critically acclaimed collaborative LP The Cycle, the London-based duo Raz & Afla is back on Mawimbi with a bold collection of club-oriented remixes blending Afro House, UK Bass, Jungle, and Electro, among other styles
With an upcoming ten years celebration of passionated sonic activities within the afro-electronic realm above them, the originally Paris-based label and DJ collective Mawimbi doesn’t fall in any sleep regarding their patient building of an adventurous and risk-taking catalog. After releasing another Afrobass two-tracker of militant anthems from Brighton’s artist Burland featuring Ghanian singer Zongo Abongo, the French imprint decided to focus the past few months on diffusing the symbiotic sound and powerful dance fusion of the London combo of multi-instrumentalist Raz & Afla, made of Israeli-born producer Raz Olsher and Ghana’s vocalist and multi-instrumentist Afla Sackey. This ended in giving birth to their first joint LP entitled The Cycle, which has been since rotating on all best radio shows across Europe and beyond, with encounters on BBC Radio 1 and Worldwide FM to only name a few. An album that is located at the crossing point of a gentle and detailed production effort and a deep sense of organic instrumentation, and thus perfectly fits with Mawimbi’s aim to be one the greatest dedicated home for the Afro-Electronic creators. Then adding Raz & Afla mixture of UK Bass explorations and Ghana-infused percussive virtuousness into the label’s roster makes no-nonsense.
Almost eight months forward, and we are now blessed with a full remixed album of « The Cycle », about to be released next May 26th. Even there, Mawimbi’s curation doesn’t fail to the purpose of giving true dancefloor energy to what was already a truly moving record, inviting standout artists such as Frenchman Praktika, English afro-funk band Ibibio Sound Machine (in which Afla Sackey also plays percussions) or junglist Crate Classics to offer their own version. Eight tracks in the pure sense of club music diversity that will accompany your ears and feet all summer, as we hope so.
Above this article you can now stream London production / DJ duo Village Cuts own take on Raz & Afla’s essential tune“Shall Prevail”. A piece where crystalline guitar stabs are melted with enlightening percussion layers in all frequency ranges. The producing pair kept Afla Sackey’s high-sung vocals intact and even embellished them with a rhythmic arrangement that never tires itself all along the way, decorated with subtle synth notes from here to there. While the original track was quite a slow bass jam taking its roots in a Dancehall / Cumbia kinda vibe, this reshaped piece is more about a rush time that reminds some of the Italian whizz kids Clap! Clap! and Khalab’s best afro-juke moments. But without paying too many dues to any music referential, it’s clear that we are witnessing a danceable masterpiece that will take all clubgoers into an inescapable knee-breaking communion.
Mawimbi will release Raz & Afla’s The Cycle remixed album next May 26th, 2023 on all platforms. You can now pre-order it on Bandcamp.