Kartel’s Africa Column (Vol. 6): Acid Funk

kartel romare

It’s been a minute since Kartel dropped in for their Africa Column, but with their Bank Holiday party incoming, we thought this a good a time as any. For more Kartel selections, check out their brilliant Monday Morning Mixtape and volumes 4 and 5 of their colum. Limited tickets for Kartel presents Romare and Owiny Sigoma Band (DJ Set) available here.

This chart is African Funk reimagined through the characteristics of acid house and techno, and about the influence happening between African and UK/US musicians at more integrated levels? To celebrate that union, here is a video of some Kwaito Street dancing set to MPIA3 aka Truss’s stomper  Acid Badger. Truss has been witnessed getting involved in this slightly more funky, discoey acid, as will be revealed in the chart. Happy reading.

Black Orchid – Albinos

Released at the end of last year, this is from an EP entitled Ritual House Vol. 2, on Parisian label Antinote. If this release is anything to come by all eyes should firmly be on this imprint. The EP creates a framework somewhere between tribal drums and chants, and the mainstays of warehouse techno. The Marimba hook is crazy, panned repeating in hard pans opposites, left, right, left. Its hypnotic and too infectious.

UR –  Atomic Witchdokta

Kartel DJ/organiser Bagheera spotted this one, taken from the Dark Energy album of 1994, released on Detroit’s Underground Resistance and credited to Detroit techno producer The Martian. It was re-issed in 2011. Info online seems pretty scarce, but who needs words when you have this combination of tribal drum patterns and talking, drum-inspired bleeps in a devastatingly functional classic Detroit banger? Well, we do actually. Email us at afrokartel@gmail.com if you want more info on the track and where to find other early Detroit-meets-afro-house sounds.

William Onyeabor – Good Name (cover by Joakim feat. Akwetey)

Ok so we’ve all heard the original by now. The Luaka Bop album and its accompanying Vice documentary were incredibly well publicized, and a thousand remixes and bootlegs have appeared of Onyeabor tunes since Daphni sampled When the Going is Smooth and Good for Ye Ye. However, Joakim’s timely (2013) remix really stands out as a tuff, oddball refix that is perfectly laced with wonky and weird drum machine fills and stabs. This remix was just officially released last weekend as part of the Record Store Day William Onyeabor remix edition LP, What!?

Red 7 – I Lost My Shoes On Acid (Onnemix)

This tune starts with all the characteristics of a late 80’s acid house tune (slower tempo, euphoric chords and aciiiid arpeggiator), then suddenly the vocals from one of my all time favourite afrobeat anthems comes in – Hugh Maseleka’s infectious 80s smasher Don’t Go Lose It Baby. Before hearing this, I was afriad there’d be a remix that relies too heavily on the original’s instrumentation, but this oddly titled bootleg pulls it off. Instead, it uses the entire vocal including its hilarious lyrics (“when you booze you lose and then you wonder why you lose your shoes”). This was first heard when Truss dropped it in the middle of a techno set at THEM, Corsica Studios, and needless to say we were kind of excited. Just a bit.

Dj Pierre – Acid Trax (DJ Pierre Green Velvet Afro Acid Mix)

This is a pretty famous track from 2007 and one which ticks a whole load of boxes for me musically. Aside from techno and West/South African music in various forms, I love original rave and acid house and enjoy Phuture’s classic Acid Trax. On top of that, this remix comes from ace drum machine toting Chicago house originator Cajmere (aka Green Velvet), alongside DJ Pierre for his Afro Acid label. This track is further removed from Africa compared to the rest of the chart, however Afro Acid aims to redirect acid house and techno to a more funky and soulful area, which is equally what this chart is showcasing.

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