Pulling a single off their previous album buffering juju, released in 2020, dumama + kechou revisit “mother time” with the help of director Ayanda Duma for a mystical tour in the Namibian desert.
Cape Town based duo dumama (Gugulethu Duma) and kechou (Kerim Melik Becker) reawaken the power of their critically acclaimed debut album buffering juju (a concept album mixing jazz, xhosa folk music, hip hop and more) with a film directed by South African filmmaker Ayanda Duma. The duo chose the track “mother time” to express visually, tapping into the “the transience of beauty, loss and mourning, displacement, the importance of memory, hopes for the future and the nature of the creative act itself” all nestled in the bosom of time. The 5 minute film follows the duo through the various landscapes of the Namibian desert feeling experimental and imaginative, full of symbols and beautiful contrasts.
Behind the camera Ayanda Duma projects her “subversive and imaginative lens which observes the ways in which the past informs the present”. A fitting perspective as Mushroom Hour, the South African label that released the project, describes buffering juju as “a conduit to a past we were not necessarily present for, and a future where threatened indigenous technologies thrive in an increasingly digitized world.” Focusing her attention on representation of the marginalized people of South Africa, particularly black women, Ayanda Duma who also premiered a short film at the Cannes Film Festival’s Horizon Award, provides a delicate gaze into the hypnotic and engaged world of dumama + kechou.
Overall the film is a splendid meditation on the inescapable nature of time, in a world not quite like our own, that helps us imagine and reflect on the vast seas of sand and the slowly falling grains that pass through the hourglass present.