The American Negro
Adrian Younge embarks on what he considers the most important project of his career with the album The American Negro: “The American Negro dissects the hidden mechanisms of a form of blind racism, using music as a medium to restore the dignity and self-esteem of African Americans like me.” He continues: “Music is one of the most important weapons we have. It is something timeless and delivers a message of harmony. People digest music differently: some people refuse to listen or read about politics, but keep their minds and hearts open to the sound. Music is the key.”
Made in the Pyrex
Considered one of the pioneers of drill in the UK, Digga D was raised on Jamaican reggae and dancehall. After the release of his single “Woi” in July 2020, which earned him a nomination for “Song of the Year” at the MOBO Awards, Digga D is back with his mixtape Made in the Pyrex, whose tracks are full of important messages, notably, “Clout is killing my people.”
The Gabonese singer makes her return just a few days before the International Women’s Rights Day to deliver a feminist message on a bed of afro pop background. She remains as engaged as ever, with tracks like “Respectez-nous” (respect us) demonstrating her message: “Hey baby, we’re going to respect each other, you and me on an equal footing.” Her multi-lingual album reflects her migratory journey, having lived in Gabon, and then Mali, before settling in France.
Red Wine Conversations
Jay Cliff has released a sensual EP, which he likens to “red wine conversations.” This project perfectly illustrates the honesty that can accompany drunkenness, allowing for a boundless lyricism. Jay Cliff is accompanied by several artists on the EP including Kaygee ADN, a star of Sierra Leone and the Canadian Töme. The velvet voice of the Ghanaian artist Efya is also present, captivating listeners on “No Time”. It is an album that vibrates with love.
Sounds of Africa
Soa Mattrix honors Africa through his new album, Sounds of Africa, following the release of “Uthando” in 2020, which can be found on the album, this time featuring a guitar overlay. For this resolutely pan-African album, Soa Mattrix has brought together several artists, such as Soulful G, Hulumeni and Thalitha. A true ode to the continent.
Based in Brighton, the producer Jez Lloyd leads the Ink Project in collaboration with several artists, including the singers Coreysan, FiFi Rong, Yazmyn Hendrix and Melanie Dymond. The collective continues its exploration of different musical genres with the album Rhythm Spirit, mixing dub, electronic music, pop and soul. Jez Lloyd is also behind the Blind Colour label, whose name chimes with this cosmopolitan album.
Yaral Sa Doom
Wau Wau Collectif
Yaral Sa Doom is the debut from this collective, mixing dub, Sufi praise songs and spiritual jazz. These avant-garde artists are rejuvenating the Senegalese music scene, while remaining very attached to West African traditions. Electronic rhythm, percussion and children’s voices form a surprising harmony.
Salatiel is launching a new album entitled Africa Represented. Following the success of the single “Water,” in the company of Beyoncé, this Cameroonian singer was able to gain international traction, particularly through his work on the soundtrack for The Lion King. This piece, entitled “Africa Represented,” pays tribute to “Mama Africa,” emphasising how he remains “black to the bone.” He is a reminder of how Africa is increasingly present throughout the music of the world.
& Baga Man
Scratcha DVA continues his collaborations following the release of the Drmtrk EP last November. His new EP, & Baga Man, aims to highlight producers influenced by afro house and dancehall. Scratchclart and Razzler Man have gotten involved, concocting “Razzclart,” a track with singular rhythm, mixing both brass instruments influenced by amapiano, grime, gqom with funky percussion: a symbiosis between afro house and British gqom.
Following collaborations with Hamza, Jul and Kaaris, Gazo is imposing himself more and more on the scene with his new album Drill FR. With the BSB label since 2019, this artist intends to make his mark on French rap scene, drawing on inspiration from his friends, his “gazos,” from Saint-Denis. The lyrics in “Inhumain” pay homage to his roots: “Solid, I’m under mafé, plantain banana, I want to be a boss.”