Palm fronds sway in the early evening gusts that sweep through the desert. The dancing trees outline the path towards a grand palace that juts from the sand in the distance. As you near the palace gates, the sounds of royal horns and war drums engulf your senses. You stand before the towering gates, and the clouds above part, through which giant pulsating orbs of colored light descend. The gates open with a thundering roar. Your feet carry you inside . . .
“World music” is a curious descriptor, seemingly a blanket term for any sonic stylings too removed from mainstream culture to examine as closely as our beloved pop, rock, hip-hop, etc. These foreign genres have boundless merits, but instead of lifting entire palettes, these artists have adopted and intertwined hues of them all. Basar is the newest full-length from German duo Dirk Leyers and DJ Nomad, as Africaine 808.
On a mission to sew together a brand new definition of world music, the duo sample and take distinct influences from a wide range of styles, including cumbia, Nigerian funk, spiritual jazz, and West African instrumentals. They fuse these disparate elements into unique breeds of versatile, bass-heavy electronic music, ranging from disco to squiggly acid house, from intricate techno to soulful trip-hop, and everything in between.
Leyers and Nomad have long been contorting sounds of African and Latin music into edits for their Vulkandance parties, and this release serves as a culmination of the skills refined in those endeavors. The progression of the record is astounding, proceeding at a pace ideally suited for the most diverse, lively celebration; a melting pot if there ever was one. If you’re seeking divergent, electronic world music, this album is for you.
– stasi (@stasisphere)